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  1. Today
  2. Expense tracking...

    I think everyone struggles to follow a budget at first, but for some people it is harder. People generally fall on a continuum of how much self control they have. Those with less self control will find it much harder because they may only be thinking short term, or they may get distracted by present wants. The fact that self control plays a major role in peoples lives is based on research, in particular the 'Dunedin Study' which has followed a large number of kiwis since birth. For example, see here. Obviously if you lack self-control you can take steps to become more aware of it, and implement systems to make it easier to stickto your budget (e.g. automate as much as you can with automatic payments between sub accounts so your income is immediately split up and apportioned appropriately). I think the reason most people overspend is because they don't track their money at all, they weren't taught financial literacy at school or by their parents, or they focus on other areas of their life and assume everyone has terrible finances. I think you're definitely right about your last statement. The hard part is sitting down and listing every single expense you are going to have, breaking it into a weekly/fortnightly/monthly amount, and adding it all into a budget.
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  5. Expense tracking...

    cool. I wonder is it is super easy for some to follow a budget, but not for others; otherwise less people would be overspending, right..? As far as I understand most people overspend... Maybe having a budget is the first step - which is the harder one to make, and then following it is easier? ...
  6. Expense tracking...

    Following a budget is super easy - as long as you are realistic about your spending. For example, if you tried to squeeze as much savings as you could out of each week and never budgeted in stuff that you know you will want to do every now and then (like restaurants etc), then you will not be able to follow it. Just give yourself permission to include everything in your budget. You could also budget in a reward for following your budget
  7. Expense tracking...

    Thanks for the insight! I must say that I haven't been a budgeting-app user until now, but reading all the good feedback overall (not just YNAB) I might start using one... I am interested to know how easy is it for people to follow their budget....? after all, regardless of the app you use, YNAB, Pocketsmith or even the Sorted tools, they all make it easier to have a plan and track how you do, but following the plan requires some self control... as all the tracking is done in retrospect.. Do you find it easy to follow your budget, once you have one...?
  8. Expense tracking...

    I personally use and love YNAB.com. I stumbled across it a few years ago and it totally changed my financial life. I drag CSV exports from my bank in to the system which takes care of the manual entry. Has good graphs to track your progress over time - and just a really solid way of budgeting. My favourite part is splitting expenses out over the year (so I budget $5 per month for AA Membership, and then when it comes time to pay, the money is already sitting there. I also put money aside for xmas each month so that the December/January period isn't a stress like it is for many. There can be a bit of a learning curve with YNAB, but it's well worth it and they have plenty of great guides and videos on their website
  9. How do you track your spending

    I don't link YNAB directly with my accounts - I find that functionality a little buggy. Instead I just export Quicken files from ASB and drag/drop them on to YNAB. Example of how to export these below :-)
  10. Credit Card Debt - The best way to pay it off?

    As I understand it, banks and credit card companies onsell either the debt or the risk to other investors. (it gets bundled together to form new investments) Investments have certain "grades" or rartings, depending on the liklihood of default. The lower the credit score the higher the chance a borrower may default on their loan. When the stock market crashed 10 years ago, (to cut a long story short) it was found that loans had been given to people who could not afford them, they had very poor credit histories and very low credit scores. The lower your credit score the higher the risk of default. When I was well into my debt four years ago, I had a credit score of 660. In two years that score has been reduced by half due to defaults being listed on it and due to manipulation of my credit report by Veda. My credit report is now about 25% accurate. And as a bankrupt, Veda (Equifax) do not give me a credit score. There is no law in NZ that prevents any creditor or debt collector from listing false information on your credit report. By that I mean if you discover wrongful information listed against you, its up to you to provide proof that the content is wrong. The credit reporter is under no legal obligation to change the information. Thats where the messy part of agency law comes into the mix. The Privacy Act only really works if you the debtor can prove some harm has come to you for wrongful information being listed against you. A bank manager told me that the purpose of a credit report is to show any defaults. Some banks may also have score thresholds in that if you are below a certain score you may not even be able to be a customer of the bank. SBS bank will not accept customers if there are defaults on a persons credit report. I have that in writing. Kiwibank seem to be able to open accounts without any listing going on a credit report. When I opened an account with them I asked them not to put an entry on my credit report (they know I'm bankrupt). And I am pleased to report they haven't. I of course had to sign the new documentation which includes a privacy waiver and gives the bank the right to pass my information to a credit reporter (this is the case with all banks). Credit reporting is actually a form of control. The accounting software company Xero also partners with Veda (Equifax). As do banks and many other corporations. Our personal data and credit histories are valuable to others and we are the mugs that keep handing information to them. The second page of a Veda credit report actually says "your credit history may be one of your most valuable assets..........." Thats a load of crap. Most people don't know they even have a credit report until a lender refuses them money. Everything is about the money. That's all anyone ever wants. If your not passing over your cash through some product or service, then they get you with your personal data, that can be collected and sold for profit. Think also loyalty cards, flybys. And how strange that Countdown is now offering insurance products and have their own pharmacy. Those industries are internationally extremely profitable for investors. Credit reporting is all a part of that same financial system. Its in existance because we are gullible and keep supporting it. You'll never hear any politian make an election promise of ditching credit reporting. But they should. I did not vote in this election, nor will I again until the goverment changes the laws around banking and debt. Let me know If anyone would like to see a copy of my credit report. I don't mind sharing it. Ford
  11. I'm keen to review our insurances to see if we can get a better deal. I have looked at a few insurance broker websites and it looks like they kind of become your "agent" and you need to go through them when making claims etc. I am not really looking for that level of service (as I am sure you have to pay ongoing fees for it!) but rather some expertise in the differences between different companies' policies and premiums so I can see whether it is worth switching. Very interested to hear any suggestions or experiences - perhaps it is worth using a broker? Let me know if you think it is!
  12. How do you track your spending

    Hi everyone who uses the YNAB, I have signed up for the 34 day free trial but I am having trouble transferring files. I am with ASB, if anyone on here could help me it would be most appreciated.
  13. Credit Card Debt - The best way to pay it off?

    This can't be shared enough - Americans call it a FICO score - we call it a credit score (cue Veda, Equifax or Dun and Bradstreet) and sometimes the information they hold about you is often wrong!!! But ask them to correct it? Not in their interests. Why? Because sharing (sorry, selling) data based on rubbish algorithms is everything. Will avoid borrowing in future (unless it's for a mortgage). A credit score is not a measure of success - it's a measure that you can take on credit and pay it back (or not)
  14. Greetings

  15. Budget with partner

    Thank you RichLife I will talk to my partner and sorting out my financial crisis base on your posted 20year of our relationship my partner never know or help me for our budget to get things right specially having 4 kids in our care.
  16. Expense tracking...

    Hi Everyone! I am doing a study on how people track their expenses and how they manage with following their own budget? How do you do it? Really interested in hearing more about people's experiences and their pain points on that front. I know that for our family (mid-40's, plus two high-schoolers, in Christchurch) it is not an easy problem to solve... we have been using spreadsheets mainly, but not really happy with that... I know there are plenty of other tools, but it feels like all of them require a lot of manual entry, which we don't really like. Any thoughts or other insights? Thanks! Yaniv
  17. Earlier
  18. Welcome to the brand new Sorted forum!

    Very good points, especially No 5. I quote this as "pay yourself first"
  19. WTF?! Save the date for What The Finance - our first Sorted live chat

    Thanks for the link to the study RichLife, it’s always great to have a debate grounded in facts over feelings. Thanks also to everyone else who contributed. We’re always keen to hear as many views as possible, however we take issue with any suggestion that we are sexist. We deliberately tailor our work in an effort to make a real difference to peoples' financial wellbeing and we’re sure no one would accuse us, for example, of being ageist for the work we do in schools or racist for working with groups on marae. Similarly, creating an event that focuses on the specific needs of women is not sexist, but a sensible and effective way of giving women the tools they need to make informed choices. We are closing the topic now but look forward to hearing from anyone with constructive comments about financial capability topics.
  20. Change our bankruptcy laws

    Hi, It seems it does hold some interest. I have been contacted today by a writer for a community newspaper, who wants to do a story. I don't know which paper and nothing is confirmed yet until we meet up in a few days, but its a promising start. Thanks for the names. I'll make a note of those. There is still much I can research, but I have already hit a couple of walls, and that is where contractural arrangements with debt collectors are entered into by the banks and government with debt collectors, contracts that we the public are not allowed access to. But that is where the answers lie, and I believe they may also lie with the Government's debt management office. Who ever investigates are going to have to have tremendous courage to unveil those secrets. Ford
  21. Change our bankruptcy laws

    It absolutely is a taboo subject which is why I think a reporter would be very keen to sink their teeth in. There are definitely some reputable journalists with the resources to do the topic justice - maybe the team who left Mediaworks for Fairfax after the current affairs show '3D' was axed (Toby Longbottom/Eugene Bingham/Paula Penfold), they investigated the NZ role in Afghanistan and turned up heaps of important stuff. Maybe an RNZ/John Campbell feature?
  22. My point was that your first post on the forum was an angry rant about gender equality - you only decided to participate after you had seen that topic! You just couldn't contain the rage. I think you've only posted once on a finance-related topic? (Careful, I haven't gone through your profile to make sure of that, I might be deceiving everyone). Anyway, I'll just leave this timely, New Zealand-focussed study here: Sexism and the gender pay gap – data that can’t be ignored Or in Justins case, data that will be completely ignored in favour of strong emotions.
  23. My account was created February 26th, the thread that you mention was created on March 6th, funny that I just debunked your claim (also funny that it would have taken you seconds to verify this information) Guess you put in about as much research on that as people who claim that the gender wage myth is fact seem to do. You need not worry, I understand that women are the "strong victims" and just keep well away from them, good luck beating something that doesn't exist.
  24. Change our bankruptcy laws

    Hi, thank you for your questions. I have noted it. The short answer is no I haven’t yet approached anyone. But that is not to say there won’t come a time when it will be right for an investigative reporter to look into our bankruptcy laws. I would like to have an article printed first to see how people respond to the issues that I will bring to the table. I still have much research to complete. I would like there to be a proper formal government enquiry, so our laws can be changed. Bankruptcy is a very taboo subject, people don’t like talking about it. It should be discussed of course because substantial public money goes into the very hidden bankruptcy regime. So not just any reporter would be suitable. For all the issues I have uncovered, and for my part in accepting debt offerings from the bank, and then being made bankrupt, I have been lucky to have people treat me with kindness. For them and the decent people of our country they deserve an investigation by someone who has integrity and who would not bias or manipulate the findings.
  25. Change our bankruptcy laws

    Have you approached any investigative reporters or the like? I'm sure someone would be keen to pick the story up and do an in-depth investigation into bankruptcy in NZ, especially when they see what the process looks like from the inside. First step towards changing legislation is to get people aware of it and talking about the need for change.
  26. Change our bankruptcy laws

    September 2017 Hi, CONTINUING THE JOURNEY. I went to the meeting of the Greens and asked my question about debt and poverty. Because their focus is towards low income and beneficiaries who are in poverty, debt is only in reference to WINZ debt. They mentioned one of the government child services I could enquire as to statistical data that they may or may not have. I might look into that later. Otherwise it appears that there will not be a lot of statisical data on how debt contibutes to poverty. I had already contacted the coronors office and they also do not keep stats on people who commit suicide because of debt. The labour party also said that they don't have policies on the level of detail I require. I have prepared a draft viewpoint for publishing in the Canterbury Today magazine. Don't know if they will accept it, because not just anyone can submit articles. I had a meeting with a regular contributor to the the View Point and got some feedback on my draft. After several months I finally received a letter from the Guardian Trust about Kiwisaver. And that was only because they first had ANZ contact me, which was a complete waste of time. Under the current laws there is no way to get out of Kiwisaver unless I emigrate to another country permanently or take it out at retirement. So there stays the government contribution with ANZ continuing to take their fees. My company has now been struck off because I am bankrupt. There was no point in me spending the money to take the Companies Office to court to retain the company because only solicitors can represent a company in the High Court. It would have cost thousands to only be told by the Judge that a bankrupt cannot be a director. I have received an application from WINZ for the accomodation suppliment. Before I was bankrupted I hadn't needed to apply for any benefits. New debt. Received a timecost report from the Official Assignee and wow, 5 months into the bankruptcy and the new debt against me which started the day I became bankrupt is now more than $11,000! At the same rates, I estimate that by the end of the bankruptcy the OA would have clocked up around $60,000 in new debt. That is more than the entire creditor debt lodged in the bankruptcy against me. Case law I was reading showed another bankrupt had nearly $200,000 in new debt against them for bankruptcy administration over three years. Wow. When I meet with the MPs I will ask about that because there are nearly 2000 bankruptcies in NZ every year. The OA takes their fee first before any creditors, and if there is not enough to pay their costs then the tax payer pays it. Public money is used if there is no money that can be retrieved from a bankrupts estate. They have now closed off the bankruptcy administration. To the bankrupt, that means nothing. Here is part of the estate report "........ability to pay contributions will be reassessed if her financial circumstances improve during the course of her bankruptcy..............." Remember people the OA has access to your bank accounts. All bankruptcy means is that creditors cannot themselves collect on the debt from the debtor. They have to put a claim in the bankruptcy estate. But the debt still exists. Unless a creditor actually writes to you and tells you it has been written off. I am still paying original creditors outside of the bankruptcy regime, and I receive student loan statements from the IRD. I spoke to two IRD staff who told me that student loan debt actually "gets capitalised and put on to the new IRD number." "Oh really" I asked. I'm waiting for that to be confirmed in writing but they have told me that mine will be written off. They also get a copy of the estate report that will show I do not have any assets. In the meantime I am paying them also and the balance is reducing. It will be interesting to see if they do write off the student loan now that the bankruptcy admin is closed by the OA. Next mission - writing to the CEO of NZTA to see if they will stop the debt collector they used from holding any profile against me now that I am bankrupt. According to the debt collector themselves, they say they must retain records for auditing purposes. I asked them who audits them, given they are not regulated by any government. They chose not to respond. I'll update again in Oct. If you think of anything about our laws that you would like changed in terms of debt collection and bankruptcy, please share it with us. PS I managed to get myself on the mailing list for the NZ Debt Management office of the government treasury. They have put out the next bond tender schedule if anyone is interested. Ford
  27. Debt to Eat

    @Hilinda I was in the same boat last year, but have had to be incredibly strict with a written budget (and I also follow Dave Ramsey) and a dialed down lifestyle. The frustration of one step forward and two back drove me nuts, as did periods of not working. Finding being intentional with spending is everything - and way less stressful. To show what's possible, this time last year, I had $5k of credit card debt that I paid off, as sick of paying the bank late fees, interest and the like to make their branch windows shinier. Then along came some pricey car repairs, dental bills and life etc. Now I have almost $5K to cover bills, emergencies, in between jobs if that happens, with some set aside to earn interest and chuck on the student loan before 31 March (fingers crossed it stays that way and my contract gets extended) - the Ramsey system can seem brutal when you start, but so worth it down the track - good luck.
  28. Confused

    Hi SoTarnz, welcome to the forum! Sorry to hear you're having issues with the website on iPad. We test the website across a wide range of devices, including iPad, and it's looking all good on our end. We are aware of a bug with the Budgeting Tool on Safari and Apple mobile devices, which we're working to fix. If you could let us know a bit more about the issues you're experiencing we'll do our best to help
  29. Confused

    Hi everyone. I think This site is awesome but for one thing, i cannot use the tools or guides on my ipad. I struggle using safari or google chrome. Can anyone advise me regarding this issue? Apparently chrome is better... not
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