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How well planned is your financial future?

Let’s face it, when you’re a new mum certain types of planning that were never important before suddenly become essential (e.g. do I have the changing bag, front door key, baby, with me?), and the rest generally goes out of the window.

Planning out a sound financial future is one area that is important for a secure and happy family life, but is one type of planning that normally gets shunted right to the back of a long to-do list. With small children keeping you busy, it is sometimes hard to think about anything much beyond the current week (sometimes the day), and monthly financial planning can become as over simplified as living from pay cheque to pay cheque and working out which bit of budget goes where! But what if there was a really easy tool to make sure you always got the best deal, and you could identify credit problems and resolve them before they get in the way of your future plans?

Well, we’ve found one. Experian Facebook offers a really classy Credit Score Report tool, which actually provides you with information you need to make any lending process you have to go through easier. The Facebook group also has a panel of Financial Planning Experts that you can contact directly through the platform. It is a thoroughly good example of a business thinking about its customers and going that extra mile to make their busy lives easier.

At some point you may want to up-size to a larger home, get credit for a new three piece suite or find out which credit card is best suited to your individual needs, and you’ll want to know that you have a really good credit history. If you don’t, the Credit Score Report can guide you through how to make it better now. Then, when you need to borrow, there will be nothing standing in your way.

If, like me, you are always on Facebook, usually looking for baby bits and pieces to buy or sell, finding new baby activities or checking out what my friends are up to at the weekend, it’s really convenient to ‘like’ the Experian Facebook page, download the credit report and refer to it when you need it.

If time is precious, I found that the raft of short (and easy to digest) videos were extremely convenient, as you don’t have time to wade through oodles and oodles of text.

This is the best video I found, as it shows how a couple who couldn’t get a mortgage using the Experian Credit Report to identify the reason for their rejection and correct the problem. Their credit score went straight back up and they got their mortgage:-

If you sign up for the credit report you also get the following benefits:-

  • How to choose the right credit card
  • What the lending criteria are for different organisations
  • How you can reduce your potential Mortgage repayments by keeping your credit score good

Four secrets of parenting that nobody tells you

Guest Post

Whether you’re expecting your first child or have a large brood, there are a few life lessons that can be learned from having children. If you’re planning your first baby, there are a few things that nobody can teach you, but here are a few pearls of wisdom that will help you on your incredible journey.

 

A portable nappy carrier will save you hours

One hard truth that you will have to accept when you become a mother is that you will never just be able to pop out of the house. A standard baby bag will soon become second nature to you throughout your baby’s infancy, and it should contain everything from a change of nappies to extra outfits, dummies, bottles and the almighty baby wipes. If you don’t want to spend hours preparing this however, you can create a portable ‘nappy station’ but always having a collection of nappy changing material on hand at home, saving you valuable hours when you’re heading out.

 

You don’t need a whole toy box to entertain your child

Admit it – how many times have you seen a child receive a new toy and be more interested in the packaging? While many toy companies will try and sway you with the latest all-singing, all-dancing toy, more often than not your child will be placated with some simple household items, including pots and pans. Just keep an eye on anything that could be dangerous and you’ll soon see one contented child.

 

Sleep filled nights will come at 17 weeks

First off, change your perception of the phrase “through the night” before you have a baby. A good night’s sleep for new parents is six hours, and you’ll find that this usually happens at around the three-month mark. Do what you can to make your baby’s sleeping area comfortable, from buying the right furniture to eliminating distractions, and you could find your sleeping patterns improving too.

 

A positive outlook will work wonders

One of the best lessons you can learn from being a parent is to accept the inevitable. You will lose sleep. Your child will throw up on your favourite top. You may scream at your partner. It’s important not to be overwhelmed by these changes and to focus your attitude on getting the positives from the experience – be thankful that your child is healthy and that you have the support network of those around you. Having a baby complete changes your focus on life and helps you appreciate the more important things, so accept it and embrace it.

 

The Essex Pass

essex-bannerWe are very excited to announce that Essex Mums is now in partnership with The Essex Pass: a fantastic new way to enjoy 2for1 deals at some of the best attractions in Essex.

The Essex Pass is much more than just a discount card; for just £9.99 you get access to hundreds of discounts across Essex for a whole year & typically make your money back in just one day out!

How does it work?

The Essex Pass is a plastic membership card which you order online. When it arrives, you simply show the pass when buying tickets to a day out, paying for your sporting activity or arriving at a restaurant. Some attractions/restaurants require pre-booking so you’re best to check the offers carefully online (www.essexpass.com) first. Offers can vary but typically most are available 12 months a year and generally 7 days a week, which means you can get great discounts even on weekends and during school holidays!

What are the deals?

Get 2for1 deals at attractions such as Marsh Farm, Barleylands Farm Park, Old MacDonald’s Farm,Boydells Dairy Farm, Imperial Bird of Prey Academy (Trip Advisor’s No1 attraction in Essex) , Harlow Falconry, Audley End Minature Railway,  Epping Ongar Railway, Huntfun, Laser warfare, Brentwood ski & snowboard centre, Lakeside karting, Brentwood karting, Rye house karting, Rope Runners, Delta Force paintball, try dives at Planet scuba, Beth Chatto Gardens, Hedingham Castle, Colchester Castle, The Secret Bunker, Hylands House & more.

Also a wide range of other details, including a “kids pay £1” deal at Hadleigh Farm, 2 free entries with the pass throughout August at Old MacDonald’s Farm,  60% off Brownes fitness boot camp, restaurants, pubs, cafes & fish n chippies offering up to 50% off food and  10-20% off at many local shops. Look out for the ESSEX PASS sticker in the window.

 

To celebrate the launch of the pass, we are offering a special ‘share with a friend’ deal:

Buy for a friend today and get one for yourself absolutely free!

When you buy your card, just add ‘Essex Mums’ plus your friends’ name in the notes section of the cart page – https://www.essexpass.com/?atid=1)




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