Keeping your finances under control is a great way to ensure your financial security. Listed below are eight tips to help you get your finances on track. Enjoy!

Tip 1: Allocate half of all raises and bonuses to savings: A simple tip, but it lets you enjoy half of the money and be sensible with the other half. If you don’t see it you won’t miss it.

Tip 2: Watch out for those incidentals: It is the little things that end up adding up over time. Write down everything you buy for two weeks and see where your money is going. There are bound to be a few surprises. Factor this into your budgeting, and see where you can make cut backs.

Tip 3: Protect your identity: Identity theft is a growing business around the world. Unfortunately, the main way criminals obtain your identity is through the Internet. If you are unlucky enough to be one of these criminal’s victims you stand to lose 1000s of dollars. Use cryptic passwords and try to stay off the dodgy websites. And we shouldn’t have to tell you that if you get an email from King Obongo from Nigeria wanting your help, hit that delete button!

Tip4: Pay bills online: Paying bills on-line saves you money in two ways. Firstly, you don’t have to pay any mailing charges or credit card charges if you do it from your savings account etc. Secondly, if you set up automatic payments, you won’t forget to pay your bills and be penalised.

Tip 5: Pay bills ahead of time where a discount is offered: Many insurance companies offer 10 percent discounts if you pay ahead of time. If this is the case, take advantage of it. The 10 percent saving will most likely equate to more savings than you would earn Interest in your account.

Tip 6: Order Cheques online: Cheques from banks can be quite expensive. An alternative is to order them from an online cheque provider. Try not to use them if you can, cheques are outdated and expensive for a reason; banks want to get rid of them completely. For once we agree.

Tip 7: Safety Deposit Boxes: These are almost a must. You can keep important and valuable items and information safe. If something happens to your house you still have originals or copies of information in these boxes. What’s more, some banks offer them cheaply or for free depending on what account you have. It also has the benefit of making you feel like Matt Damon in the Jason Bourne series. Except if you’re like me you won’t be putting in 12 passports and a Colt.45.

Tip 8: Back up your financial data on the computer: This can save you hundreds of dollars in recovering data costs. Remember it is not a matter of if your hard drive collapses, it is a matter of when! Hard drives only have a life of around 4 years. I learnt this all too painfully when ours went at 4.5 years. Lost all of our data but more painfully a lot of irretrievable photos and videos of the kids. Pretty painful, I tell you.