292 Payneham Road, Payneham SA 5070

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Small steps add up

Small steps add up

Sometimes, when thinking about your long-term financial goals, they can seem so big as to be insurmountable. But the truth is, those that achieve financial success don’t usually do so by encountering a sudden windfall. Rather, they have in place a set of small habits that allow them to work towards their dreams. And by investing small amounts over the long-term, they see big outcomes. 

You see it’s much like climbing a mountain. When you start your journey, the summit can seem intimidatingly far off, but with every little step you get closer to your destination.

Your finances work the same way. The small steps you take today could make a big difference in the future.

Increasing your savings through automation

They say it takes 60 days to establish a new habit. Automating a transfer into a savings account on the other hand takes all of a few minutes. Starting with a small amount that you won’t miss is the best way to go. Frequent regular payments —$50 a week is easier to bear than $200 a month—will mean you don’t feel the pinch.

When choosing an amount to set aside, you want to ensure it’s a sacrifice you can bear so that you can still enjoy the little things, and not so large as that you’ll have to dip in during the month.

As you adjust to these subtle budget tweaks, you can incrementally increase your automated savings contributions over time.

Working down debt by increasing repayments

The same principle applies for your debt repayments. Even committing to a small increase could make a big difference in how quickly you pay off your debts.

Once you’ve decided to commit a little bit more towards paying down your debt, it’s time to consider your repayment strategies. Here a few options you may wish to consider.

    • Proportional method: after meeting your minimum repayments split the remaining proportionally between your debts.


    • Avalanche method: list your debts in order of the size of the interest and, after meeting your minimums on all of them, pay off the highest one first.


    • Snowball method: Direct all excess funds into paying off your smallest debt first. The theory goes that as the smallest one should be an easy victory, it will give you a sense of achievement. As you continue to pay off the debts from smallest to largest, this sense of accomplishment could snowball.


  • Debt consolidation: In some case, you may be able to consolidate multiple debts into the one low interest account.

Everyone’s situation is different and therefore the approach to repaying your debt will depend on your unique circumstances. We can help you figure out which method will suit you best.

Building your nest egg

No matter where you are on your journey towards retirement, small incremental additions to your super could make a big difference to the overall size of your nest egg.

A popular way to approach this is through concessional super contributions. Often called salary sacrificing, it works by your employer redirecting a portion of your pre-tax income (above the standard 9.5% contribution they already pay) towards your superannuation. This can have a number of benefits: it’s taxed at a lower rate, and money in your super account continues to generate compound interest over the long term. This can make a big difference to your nest egg when you eventually retire.

Concessional super contributions are capped at $25,000 per financial year and can be tax effective if you’re earning over $37,000.i

Sometimes the smallest financial habits are the ones that bear the most fruit over the long term. So, this year why not make some small changes that will really add up.

We can help you maintain your lifestyle while working towards your goals.


Read more from our January 2019 update here:

Contact us on 0883620060 to discuss your existing financial plan

Owl Financial Management (OwlFM) is an Adelaide based Financial Adviser that has clients all over Australia.

Financial Advisor Adelaide

We are an award winning practice that has been providing financial advice to South Australians since 1969. We really enjoy getting to know our clients and building a relationship with them that lasts over many years. We have a diverse range of clients from mum and dad to AFL players to ASX CEOs. All of which have a diverse range of financial advice needs and very different relationships to maintain. Our clients describe a 'breath of fresh air', personable, expert and people with high integrity. Clients have also mentioned that they are not treated as a number and the advice is specific to them. Working with clients for clients.

Financial Planner Adelaide

The one most rewarding thing about being a financial planner in Adelaide is when you have been working collaboratively with a client in developing and building their goals and objectives and the come to fruition. This give both the clients and myself a real sense of achievement and to use the famous quote 'are we there yet?' and together we can say YES! There has never been a better time to look towards what you want to achieve and start a financial plan so you can get there too.

Financial Planning Adelaide

A person's financial story is like a jigsaw puzzle... "lots of pieces needing to be put into their correct places". A financial adviser can assist a client to put the pieces in the right places by having a series of simple conversations about where a they are currently situated, where they want to be and what strategies can assist them. Every client has a different financial story and goals. Each jigsaw puzzle will always be different. A good financial adviser is experienced at putting together a wide range of jigsaw puzzles. Helping a client put their own puzzle together and seeing their satisfaction is a wonderful feeling.

Barry Phillis, Chris Scriva and Owl Financial Management Pty Ltd are Authorised Representatives of GWM Adviser Services Limited Australian Financial Services Licensee Registered Office at 105-153 Miller Street North Sydney NSW 2060 and a member of the National Australia group of companies.

GENERAL ADVICE WARNING: The advice on this site may not be suitable to you because it contains general advice that has not been tailored to your personal circumstances. Please seek personal financial advice prior to acting on this information.

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