Getting your finances in order: Technology and research hold the key

As our technologically driven lives get more complicated, so do our finances. More services and more choice usually equals more bills I mean, who paid for a mobile phone service twenty years ago? And it’s less than a decade since the first smartphone was launched, simultaneously bringing portable internet access and a need to pay for the privilege of data download. Gone are the days when simply putting some money aside in a savings account amounted to prudent financial management these days, effective financial personal control is a multi-faceted process. However, the internet age is not all about increasing the number of ‘essential’ outgoings you have to fund each month. The online information stream also brings access to an ever-increasing body of good financial advice. From impartial, government backed advice sites that can provide education on tax effective savings vehicles, to the comparison sites that can make quick work of zeroing in on the best deals for almost anything, the internet can swiftly provide you with all the information that you need to achieve better financial management. It can also save time on those mundane tasks like opening a new online savings account with Santander that used to require a physical journey to the high street, with the attendant nuisances of parking, queuing, and people generally getting in the way!

In the UK, there are several sites that can provide both general and specific advice on a wide range of money management matters. The DirectGov and Money Advice Service sites are both government funded and completely impartial, and a good place to start when checking that you are getting all the tax breaks and benefits to which you are entitled. Organisations like the Citizens Advice Bureau, Consumer Credit Counselling Service, and EXTRA LINKS REMOVED are also not-for-profit organisations that specialise in offering unbiased advice focussed on the best ways of sorting out debt problems.

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The core philosophy at the heart of the aforementioned site and indeed every successful strategy for effective personal financial control is education, awareness and a degree of self-discipline. Following this mantra, effective budgeting is coupled with informed decision making to both cut out unnecessary expenditure, and maximise value for money when goods and services have to be bought, through harnessing the power of the internet to always find the best deals.

Some tactics, like moving debt from expensive products to cheaper deals, is quick to research and simple to understand. Other strategies like using multiple comparison sites, followed by looking for cashback referral deals may require following through a few more steps, but none of it is rocket science. Taken as a whole, the possible range of options for achieving more effective financial control can seem to present a mammoth task. However, as with any important project, the key to success is as simple as breaking it down, and taking one step at a time. Through incremental yet tangible improvements, it is true to say that taking control of your finances has never been easier than it is today, thanks to the power of the internet.

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