The holidays are in the rearview and the New Year is just over the horizon. As everyone starts the New Year off with positive changes and new annual goals, make sure your finances are one of them! Don’t let your financial dreams fall out of reach by checking out these 4 financial changes you should promise yourself as you head into 2019.
- Create a budget: According to a recent study on fool.com, over 57% of American households do NOT follow a budget. In fact, 36% of Americans feel budgeting is too much work and not enough reward. A good budget should only take upwards of an hour to set up, and at the most, 30 minutes to revisit each month. The difference between a well-planned budget and not having one at all could be missing your financial goals!
- Pay off Unhealthy Debt: Every debt is different, from school loans to credit card debt and more. To eliminate your debt effectively, don’t look at the amount of debt, but the different rates you are incurring interest. Whichever debt has the highest interest rate, pay this off first. Also investigate cutting expenses to pay off debts faster!
- Build Emergency Fund: Do you have enough money to pay for a $400 emergency? If so, you are better off than 40% of Americans. Emergencies and accidents don’t come with a warning and can happen anytime, anywhere. Before finalizing your financial goals this year, make sure you have a minimum of three months’ worth of living expenses saved away.
- Boost your retirement savings: If you are planning on living off Social Security as your only income once you retire, don’t. When Social Security was created, it was designed to replace roughly 40% of the average workers pre-retirement income. In fact, the average person will need DOUBLE that to live comfortably. Now in 2019, Retirement plan contributions have increased, which is more reason than ever to start saving more for your retirement goals. In addition, look at other ways to receive guaranteed income, like an annuity or IUL.
While the year has just started, rock your finances so you can start saving like it’s 2020! By saving more, creating a financial budget, and overall increasing retirement assets, you can start building your dream retirement, NOW. Before reviewing your current finances, reach out to a financial professional to see how they can help build your financial legacy.
Content derived from financial website, The Motley Fool (www.fool.com).
Disclosure: This information is provided as general information and is not intended to be specific financial guidance. Before you make any decisions regarding your personal financial situation, you should consult a financial or tax professional to discuss your individual circumstances and objectives.