|Docklands by night - 2007|
With my self-employed income relying on when invoices get paid (my invoicing is always done for the last day of each month but there is invariably a small discrepancy with when clients actually pay) but MrEH's salary dropping into the bank on a set day each month, our Direct Debits (DD's) are split into two groups - one set paid on/around the 1st of each month, with the others being set to on/around the 15th. The cashback credit card DD is taken at the very end of the month, usually around the 26th. In addition on the 1st of the month a regular payment is set up for MrEH's personal money - from the joint account where his salary lands, back to his personal account. My Invoices are usually paid between the 5th - 10th of the month, but for tax purposes these payments head directly to my personal account. The very first thing I do before ANY of my income can be considered "ours" is remove 25% of it into a separate account - this covers my tax & NI contributions, and ensures that when payment for those becomes due I don't get into a muddle. If you are self employed you MUST do this - that money simply is NOT yours and should never be considered as such! Once that's taken account of I transfer over my contribution to our joint account, leaving my personal money for the month behind.
|Millennium Bridge & St Pauls - 2006|
I mentioned insurances earlier on - and those pesky "easier payment options" that all the companies generally tend to offer - well of course they do, each time someone elects to pay their policy cost spread over a year the company gets an extra cut from the fees charged for this facility! The exceptions to this are generally life Insurance and Pet Insurance, both of which opt for monthly payments as standard and won't normaly charge any extra for this. If you're looking to "get your financial house in order" then my suggestion would be that one of the first things to prioritise is getting money set aside ready to pay car & home insurance policies "up front" at the start of the year. Likewise, if your TV license is currently paid on the old quarterly DD system, you're paying extra for this, too, so it's worth either paying upfront on that, or indeed getting swapped to the monthly DD instead which doesn't attract a fee.
|City of London - 2008|
So that's how WE do things - how do you arrange your finances? Have you only recently realised the benefit of setting aside money to cover the "just in case" stuff? Do you have a great long list of online savings accounts attached to your main bank account too?
(And yes, this is another of those "completely unrelated photos" posts!)