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Online course

Finance Fundamentals: Managing the Household Balance Sheet

This course explores household assets (investments and property) and liabilities (debts) and examines how these should be managed.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No access to course tests
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • Access to course tests
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Finance Fundamentals: Managing the Household Balance Sheet

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This course is part of the Business and Finance Fundamentals and Finance Fundamentals programs, which will enable you to master this subject in depth.

Why join the course?

Finance Fundamentals: Managing the Household Balance Sheet starts by looking at borrowing and debts. We get to grips with the factors that drive interest levels. We look at the differences between ‘good’ debts and ‘bad’ debts and at the way lenders credit score those seeking to borrow money.

We then move on to examine the array of investments that people can hold – including savings accounts, bonds, shares and holdings in funds. We look at the determinants of investment returns and at the historical evidence about which are the best investments. We also look at how investments are taxed.

Housing is the next topic. We look at the costs of buying and selling property and at the rationale for owning property and the risks involved. This involves understanding the mortgage products that are used to buy property.

The course finishes at examining one very crucial investment: the investment in our pension fund to support use in retirement. We examine how occupational or personal pensions are needed to top up the pension provided by the state and at how to determine how much income you will need in retirement. We also look at the impact of the recent reforms to pensions in the UK.

The facilitated 4-week course is up-to-date and uses an array of audio-visual assets to help you through the subject matter.

Develop fundamental business and finance skills

This course has been developed by The Open University Business School – a pioneering institution that is triple accredited by AMBA, EQUIS and AACSB.

It is one of eight from The Open University, designed to help you gain fundamental business and financial skills, including communication, networking, relationship building, project management, personal financial planning and management, investment and financial services.

You can complete this course as part of one of these two programs:

Finance Fundamentals: four courses, which will give you valuable skills to manage finances at home and at work, and enable you to earn a FutureLearn Award.

Business and Finance Fundamentals: eight courses; holders of FutureLearn Certificates of Achievement for all eight courses can earn 30 UK credits towards The Open University Business School’s BA in Business Management by passing a linked Open University assessment module (requiring separate OU registration and fee).

The True Potential Centre for the Public Understanding of Finance (True Potential PUFin)

This course has been adapted from original material created by The Open University’s True Potential Centre for the Public Understanding of Finance, and was made possible thanks to the generous support of True Potential LLP.

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Identify and understand the different forms of borrowing and the cost of debt
  • Explore the different ways to invest and the returns provided by different investments
  • Identify and to understand how to buy and sell property
  • Explore the ways to plan for a pension income
  • Identify and to understand how to compile a household balance sheet and to measure the risks associated with it

Who is the course for?

For further information about registration, the final assessment course, your eligibility and the BA in Business Management, visit the Open University website. The Open University does not operate in Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. This means that Learners based in those countries will not be able to convert their participation in this Program to Open University course credits.

Who will you learn with?

Martin Upton

I am Director of the True Potential Centre for the Public Understanding of Finance (PUFin) at the OU Business School. Previously I was Treasurer of Nationwide Building Society.

Who developed the course?

The Open University (OU) is the largest academic institution in the UK and a world leader in flexible distance learning, with a mission is to be open to people, places, methods and ideas.

Free:

  • Access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • No access to course tests
  • No certificate

Upgraded:

  • Unlimited access to the course, for as long as it exists on FutureLearn (this includes access to articles, videos, peer review steps, quizzes)
  • Access to course tests
  • A Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course

Find out more

Get extra benefits, upgrade this course. For $69 you’ll get:

Unlimited access

Upgrading will mean you get unlimited access to the course.

  • Take the course at your own pace
  • Refer to the material at any point in future

If you’re taking a course for free you have access to the course for its duration + 14 days, regardless of when you join. If you upgrade the course you have access for as long as the course exists on FutureLearn.

Access to tests

When you upgrade you’ll have access to any tests during the course.

  • Validate your learning
  • Ensure you have mastered the material
  • Qualify for a certificate

To receive a Certificate of Achievement you need to take any tests and score over 70%. You don’t get access to tests if you choose to take a course for free.

A Certificate of Achievement

Upgrading means you’ll receive a Certificate of Achievement when you complete the course.

  • Prove your success when applying for jobs or courses
  • Celebrate your hard work
  • Display on your Linkedin or CV

To receive a Certificate of Achievement you need to mark 90% of the steps on the course as complete, and score over 70% on any course tests.