As we kick off the new year and the celebrations draw to a close, it’s customary for many to engage in a little retrospection, to reflect on the past year and make resolutions for the year that lies ahead. Setting financial resolutions for what you want to accomplish will provide you with direction and goals that will help set you up for a more prosperous future.
You might be able to accomplish everything you set out for the year, but implementing even a few of these things can provide a big step forward over the next 12 months. We’ll provide a little guidance for you here, but try to set up your own goals as well.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when trying to make effective resolutions:
- Be Specific: Instead of “I’ll save more this year”, try “I’ll save $500 every month”.
- Stay Realistic: Aim for what’s achievable. Setting the bar too high can lead to early disappointments.
- Write Them Down: Penning down your goals makes them tangible and serves as a constant reminder.
- Automate Savings: Set up automatic transfers to your savings or investment accounts to avoid temptations.
- Review Periodically: Check in quarterly to see how you’re doing. Adjust if needed.
With that said, we’ve put together a list of 10 financial resolutions for you to add to your list for the upcoming year. Make sure you’re working with your advisor to build a plan to accomplish each of these. Now is the time to take control of your financial future and these ten things can help you do just that.
- Reduce your debt.
- Boost your retirement savings amounts (401k max contribution going up, etc…).
- Learn from past years and prepare for the unexpected (emergency fund or take it in another direction).
- Don’t overreact to the headlines.
- Implement a budget (or at least look for ways to track some areas of your spending to see if you can find some waste that can be easily eliminated).
- Check beneficiary designations on all your accounts.
- Check your credit. If it’s been a while, use the free reports to make sure everything is accurate and in good standing.
- Review your tax bracket, so you don’t get surprised later in the year.
- Ask your advisor if a Roth conversion is right for you.
- Rebalance your portfolio. Again, if you don’t know how, ask your advisor.
Bonus: Meet with a financial advisor, especially if you have never done it and you’re starting to get within 5-10 years of retirement.
Use this time as an opportunity to reassess, re-strategize, and realign your financial path. The journey to retirement starts with a single step and we’re here to help you every step of way.