I’m on a fixed income and paying off my mortgage. I have very little left over for fun and was wondering what type of activities are out there that can enrich my life but are low or zero cost. Also, is it wiser to put more of my spare money towards my home loan to pay it off sooner, or should I be putting that money aside for fun things or savings?

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  • An offset account on your mortgage is a great idea, that way you pay less interest but can access the money if you need it. Having said that, life is short so you should definitely enjoy it as much as possible. I personally love spending time in nature whether its at the beach/park/river or hiking, all of which are free but I guess it depends on what you like doing. There are generally lots of free activities on if you are in a city though, check the local chat pages or papers.

  • I’d definitely put spare cash towards the mortgage. It will save you lots in the long run.

  • a thought, would you have time or energy for another job for separate income away from mortage income? ive been selling things on swap buy sell for a very long time, not that things just sit there and collect dust, but it gives me some extra cash to put towards kids activities or some savings like a holiday. since ive got the time, ive set up my own cleaning business even though I do have another job but ive also got the energy that I can make extra income. it doesn’t have to be a big business but dog walking or ironing can be done too.
    if your alone, theres a beach, park or a place where you could go for walks, a goal to get fit again or a new hobby to take up such as long distance running or trail running.
    if you have kids, take them on their scooter or bikes or walk the dog…
    there are free activities that can be use like libraries, window shopping as sometimes theres activities that are held in some shops. ive subtribe with my shopping centre that shows activities that are being held at the shopping centre, join up village cinemas as they email $5 kids flick on certain dates but its always at 10am weekends, join up krispy Kreme as they had like pirate day where you had to dress up and say a code saying then they give you 24 donuts for free which my 7yr old daughter did and she shared with her families…I sometimes get ideas from pintrest and google free activities in Melbourne area etc

  • If you get the free weekly paper that is actually paid for by local councils take the time to check this lists of events on. Some events are free. If you are near any shopping centres check to see if they have any events / activities on – especially if you have children. I have registered with 2 local shopping centres to receive details of what is on at them. Check weekend events via google. I can’t remember its exact title at the moment but I’m sure there would be one in most states. Check with you local tourism office. They may be able to give you ideas of free or inexpensive places you can visit.
    While it is a great idea to pay as much extra off your mortgage as possible, some there is a limit or you are penalised. Also you should put some savings aside in case you need it for necessary unexpected expenses.
    You also need to be able to mix with other people otherwise you may “fall into a rut” and not enjoy life as you should even with restricted finances.

  • Local libraries have loads of free and interesting activities and these are free-maybe have a look.

  • A little money in each pot might be the best idea.

  • We it depends on if you are in the city or a country town – cities have plenty of free things going on, so jump online and join facebook pages to find out what’s on.

    Country towns are harder – do you have a local ‘what’s on in xx’ if not, start one, it’s a way to get involved in what’s happening, and hopefully you will be swung a few free tickets for promoting things.

    Look around for who is playing music around you – is there a live music cocktail hour at a bar in town? Go along, drink soft drink, have chips as a snack and enjoy.

    Personally, I believe in balance and would spend extra money on fun. But if paying the home off sooner, or improving it, is your thing then go for it.

  • If possible, put your spare money into a redraw facility or an offset account so that you gain the benefit of lower interst on your mortgage while still being able to tap into the funds in need.
    Look at joining your local libary and connecting with them on their activities. There are often free and low cost things to be done with them.

  • Enter competitions. Mountains of prizes to be won, movie tickets, DVDs, prizes on here are great! Free entry too

  • well get it paid off sooner but make sure that you know your numbers! most loans will have an early pay out fee and that is around several hundred to a thousand dollars etc. check that part of your loan out. in saying that, it is worth being debt free and getting through this time

  • I am in the same situation as you are, I pay my mortgage weekly as it reduces the interest a lot faster and it is less of a hit than if I paid it monthly. As for activities that are fun check out your local council for groups that they run, a lot of them are free, there are walking groups or chat groups where like minded people get together and share ideas, they also run really affordable craft and education classes.

  • Scrapbooking is fun and generally very cheap, (you don’t need all the cutters etc) scissors and glue and paper with some fun notes. Gardening is good and you can save money of fruit and veg, especially growing from seed. (plant extra in pots and sell them) I would keep paying as much as you need off your mortage but keep a few dollars aside each week for a little holiday at the end of the year, and a few special things just for you. All work and no play is not good for you either.

  • I believe that everyone should have at least one day of fun each week even if its buying a huge block of chocolate or heading out for a meal.
    We put as much money into our mortgage as we can but also budget in some money to use just on ourselves.

  • Consider starting up a party plan plan business. There are so many available now with no or low start up costs. You take your products to peoples homes to demonstrate them and collect a commission on what you sell. The biggest advantage I have found that it is now my social life and I make money doing it! I meet so many people and enjoy a chat, coffee and cake and it is helping me to get over being shy. I was hesitant at first but now I can’t recommend it enough and I really enjoy the extra bit of money each week. Regarding home loans, I recommend checking if your loan has extra repayment facilities that means you can put your savings into the loan to offset interest but allows you access the money if you ever need it. Husband and I now put extra money in to cover big bills like car & home insurances and home repairs and just draw it out as the bills come in.

  • Paying off a mortgage is one of the hardest things to do in your life. But once you pay is off you are free to spend your money on other things. It also makes you appreciate those things more and there is no stress wondering where and how long and how much interest on the mortgage you have to go before starting to pay off the actual loan. There are also a lot of things you can do without or spending little money. Join a walking club for instande. Volunteer you time in a thing that interests you. Go to the museum, art gallery etc. Go for a walk around the block. Get to know your neighbours. Go the the swimming pool. Sell your stuff at a sunday market. Look up the internet or your local paper or even ring the council for events that are around your area. Saying that, I also think its a good idea to have a nest egg so if you can save 10% of your earnings and then place it in a long term account for a short period and keep investing it, if you really don’t need (not want) it, that wil help you if anything drastic happens.

  • Paying off the mortgage as soon as possible is a priority. Fun things u could do that are basically free are going to the park, spending time with love ones, playing with your pets, watching tv, going for walks, and entering competitions. You can also post in free site like gumtree to sell your unwanted possessions just for that little bit extra money.

  • For me, personally I would enjoy every minute of my life. We only live once, and you never know what will happen next. So if you have a spare of bucks to spend. I will spend it honey life is to precious not to enjoy it.

  • It’s better you pay off the mortgage asap , you never know wot happens tomorrow. It doesn’t mean that you should have to miss out on the little pleasures of life .

  • It’s better you pay off the mortgage asap , you never wot happens tomorrow. It doesn’t mean that you should have to miss out on the little pleasures of life .

  • You could ride a push bike with your kids (which is what I do) wait until Sunday and make use of the $2.50 family fun day pass on public transport which you can travel to different destinations up to Newcastle and down to Kiama I think. So every sunday you could travel somewhere different, make it a weekly ritual put different destinations in a hat and each family member picks a destination each week and plan your day around that, take lunch with you.
    If you live in Sydney:
    Take advantage of the free 555 shuttle bus in the city centre and admire Sydney’s buildings and streetscapes from a different angle. The service operates in both directions on a loop from Central Station to Circular Quay via George Street. The service operates 9am to 3.30pm weekdays, Thursday until 9pm, Saturday, Sunday and public holidays from 9.30am to 6pm.
    If you live in Melbourne:
    Queen Victoria Markets
    The City Circle Tram service provides a free and convenient way to get around central Melbourne.
    If in Gold Coast:
    Broadwater Parklands – Jumping pillow and BBQ’s, bike tracks etc
    As far as your home loan is concerned if you have that same amount every week/fortnight put it on your home loan but don’t leave yourself short. It’s not the end of the world if you don’t pay off your mortgage within 20 years! oh and if you pay monthly try paying fortnightly this too saves you a bit.
    Live in the here and now because you don’t know what’s around the corner.

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