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Instant gratification. Everyone wants it, everyone needs it, everyone craves it, and generally everyone these days seems to manage to get it! But what impact does that have on our medium and longer term “gratifications”?

I was once told that the first decision you make after gaining fulltime employment is the most important, as for many it is that brand new shiny car. It looks great, it makes you feel great but for many it has a lingering impact on your ability to set yourself free financially. Car finance or exhaustion of savings, neither is very palatable.

Some may decide that purchasing a house is the first thing on the agenda – and don’t get me wrong there is no one size fits all with the first decision you make – but maybe it’s more of a trend of decisions from that first one itself. New home, big mortgage, but gratified. Now is it time for that new car? Hang on a second, the bank is saying they will let me “re-draw”? Free money! Wow, that will only increase my mortgage repayments by a couple of dollars a fortnight, terrific, where do I sign up?!?!

Not only the new home owner, new car driver is gratified, but the bank is also rubbing their hands together! More borrowed, more interest, more time to pay it off, it is a banks bread and butter. While the lender is swallowing up your hard-earned funds with interest payments the gratification is starting to fade, but what comes next? Kids, wedding, a holiday? But wait, the bank is there breathing down your neck again, because repayments and interest charges don’t take a break they just keep baring down systemically on your hard-earned dollars.

All sounds pretty grim doesn’t it! I don’t mean to be a scare monger but unfortunately for many this is what their financial situation spirals into before their very eyes. I’m not saying don’t live, I’m not saying don’t be gratified, because as we have all seen it can be over before you know it. BUT, the earlier you can make wise and informed decisions the easier your progression into financial comfortability can occur, and that is when it truly easy to make gratifying decisions!

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