Marathon runner or couch potato: how financially fit are you?
When it comes to managing your money, are you a head-on go-getter, always looking for new ways to make it work for you? Or do you shove the whole topic under the rug, stick your fingers in your ears and sing loudly, trying not to think about it?
Most of us probably fall somewhere in between. And for many of us, as Map My Plan’s new research has shown, our pretty average financial state causes us stress, sleepless nights and lots of worry about the future.
So how financially fit are you?
And what does that even mean?
Well, we came up with a way of measuring anyone’s financial fitness. It’s called the financial fitness index, and it’s based on four factors – your control over your personal finances, your capacity to deal with financial shock, whether you’ve planned for a secure financial future, and your degree of financial freedom.
A nation with room to improve
We also surveyed 1,617 working Australians – men and women from across the country, of all ages, working in full-time, part-time and casual roles. We asked them about their current financial situation and their financial goals, concerns and plans. From their responses, we found out that the average working Australian has a financial fitness index score of 114 out of 200.
Let’s put that into perspective. The index classifies any score under 95 as financially unfit, while anything over 160 is super fit. Over 125 is fit, which leaves us as a nation sitting at average – not totally out of shape, but still a number of training sessions short of running that 5km fun run.
At the moment, 10% of working Australians are super fit. But a whopping 28% are unfit. That’s more than one in four of us who are struggling to meet our regular payments, are severely underinsured and have no plan for the future.
Worryingly, one third of our respondents said their finances were a major cause of stress in their life. And close to half agreed they don’t have enough money to do the things they want to do in their lives.
Find out your financial fitness index score
So how do you measure up against the rest of us? Are you a financial marathon runner? Or is it time to head to the gym? Even if you’re pretty fit in some areas, you could be neglecting an important muscle group. The good news is that once you know where you stand, you can start to make improvements.