The financial market is uncertain, it always has been. The GFC in 2007-2008 proved this unquestionably, with not only businesses but individuals and families losing their hard-earned investments due to reasons beyond their control.
However, even as the world’s finances has somewhat settled over the past 12 years, we are never out of the woods. Khang Pham of Melbourne-based Pandora Financial Services has over 22 years experience in the banking industry, gaining a wealth of knowledge around financial services. He now urges everyone, particularly women and families, to carefully plan their investments, earning potential and outgoings to ensure they stay on top in the event of an unexpected crisis or downturn.
“The finance industry is still unsettled and with continued focus by the regulators, it will remain on this path for some time to come. More important than ever, families need to keep an eye on their income and spending with uncertainty in the economy,” said Khang.
His key piece of advice is to ensure you have a leak-proof financial plan that you are willing – and able – to properly execute. It is one thing to set up your finances in neat little spreadsheets, but if you cannot make it work in practice, something needs to change. Think ahead to major events such as birthdays and Christmas, and take a reality check on your cash flow by tracking and measuring your monthly net position.
Your plan provides you with financial security and stability when there is a financial crisis. For example, in a widespread financial crisis, often jobs are the first things that go.”
“As people cut back on spending, the need for retail presence and service decreases, along with the staffing needed to manage it. If you have a sound financial plan and goals, you will be well geared to weather any financial crisis,” Khang said.
Alternate and passive income streams are very effective ways of solidifying your financial position, helping to eliminate debt and boosting savings for a rainy day. Khang highly recommends everyone look at their passive income options and take steps to set up a stream that works for you and your current position.
At Pandora Financial Services, for example, Khang and his team provide an opportunity for clients to create an additional income stream using their home loan. This includes various loan options, investments, supporting the self-employed and creating self-managed super funds.
There is a host of other passive income streams now readily promoted, including rental property, stocks, high yield saving accounts or even affiliate marketing. Passive income is particularly useful for women and families who may need an additional income stream in the case of one partner being unable to work.
“For example, these options give career women more choices if they decide to start a family. They can choose to stay home a bit longer, without the financial stress that comes with it.”
Khang’s final piece of advice for people looking to improve their financial security is to get moving on debt consolidation – however you must cut up the credit card afterwards. There are many options here, including through banks and smaller lenders, so it pays to do your research. If in doubt, seek the help of an expert to guide you in the right direction, and you will be well-placed to ride out any financial crisis that comes your way.