Personal Finance

It’s not too early for financial resolutions

The new year is fast approaching — but if you haven’t stopped to make New Year’s resolutions yet, you’re probably not alone. However, it stands to reason that the earlier we start planning our resolutions, the more successful we have a chance to be. While the classic resolutions of more exercise or less stress are great, here are a few ideas on how you can set your sights on financial wellness for your new year.

Set those goals

The great thing about financial goals is that they look different for everyone, and there’s no “wrong” goal to set. Whether you want to buy your first house, your fifth house, or you are just hoping to buy an iced coffee without fear of your card getting declined, there’s always room to make small adjustments to help you achieve whatever you’re aiming for. Once you figure out what you want, your path to get there will be much clearer.

And here’s a bonus helpful hint: studies have shown that writing down goals makes them easier to meet. So grab a pen and paper while you’re brainstorming.

Focus on savings

Determine what you need in savings based on your lifestyle. A good question to ask when it comes to savings is, “How long could I sustain my lifestyle without income?” That will give you a good idea how comfortable you can be with what you’ve already saved, and what you should consider aiming for. No matter the number, putting at least a little bit into savings every time you have income is a great financial habit to get into.

Meet with a financial adviser

If you’ve got big plans this year, like a new house, a marriage, retirement or anything in between, consider setting up a meeting with a financial expert to set up a plan to keep you financially confident no matter what changes come your way.

Diversify your portfolio

Maybe for you this means establishing a portfolio at all. Whatever it means, with the help of a trusted investment advisor, weigh your risks, rewards and options and see if there’s a way you can make your money work as hard as you will in 2019.

Re-evaluate your financial institution

If you’ve been with the same bank or credit union for a number of years, make sure you’re getting what you need from them. Just because you’ve always done something a certain way doesn’t mean you have to stick to it. You may be able to get more from your money or more from your service. As you look at your financial goals, look at your financial institution, too, and see if it could use a 2019 upgrade.

Your financial resolutions can be as detailed as you want them to be — these are just a few jumping off points to get the gears turning on financial resolutions. And while we did say the earlier the planning the better chance for success, it’s also important to remember that when it comes to resolutions, you technically have the whole year to accomplish it—not just January!

Kat’s Money Corner is posted on Dollars & Sense every Tuesday. Kat Hnatyshyn, when not blogging or caring for her little ones, is a manager with CommunityAmerica Credit Union. For more financial chatter, visit http://communityamerica.com.

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