Happy Fall Y’all
Break out the calendars and flip the page to October – we’re officially ¾ of the way through 2021!
Can you believe it?!
Time to dig up those new years resolutions you made for the year and revisit your goals.
Did you resolve to save money this year? Commit more to savings? Make significant progress on your loans?
Whatever your goals may be, we know you’ve got it in you to accomplish whatever you set your mind to and there is still time to make the back quarter of 2021 some of the best months of your life! So, a treat or two, and get to work – you’ve got goals to crush!
Here’s your year-end financial checklist:
1. Revisit your goals
A lot of time has passed since you originally jotted those notes down at the start of 2021. Take a moment to celebrate what you’ve already accomplished and then spend some time to review and amend these goals as you need. What needs to change in order to accomplish the remaining tasks on that list? How can your accountability buddy hold you accountable?
2. Update your budget
Have you made your budget for 2021? How has it been working for you? Take a few minutes to focus on your budget and make adjustments as needed. For example, if your needs have changed or if any of your bills have increased/decreased, adjust your spending goals by category accordingly.
Another reason to update that budget: if you’re anticipating any big moves or milestones to take place in the next few months. For instance, if you’re planning to move, change jobs, downsize, adopt a pet, start a family, get married, attend weddings, holiday travel, etc., then you’ll want to ensure your budget is in line.
3. Check your credit score
If you haven’t pulled your credit score in the last 12 months, definitely take 5 minutes to do so now. These scores fluctuate all of the time so it is always a smart idea to stay on top of the changes in value so that you can plan accordingly. It is especially important to know your credit score if you plan to make a big purchase in the coming months. If you are thinking of purchasing or leasing a vehicle or owning a home, you will want to know your credit rating now so that you can take active steps towards improving it as much as possible prior to your big purchase.
4. Start planning for Holiday spending
If the end of 2021 is synonymous with holiday parties, travel, get togethers with friends and family, and gift-giving, then set aside some time this week to create a realistic savings goal for the next few months. This way, when the parties commence and the holiday season arrives, you’ll be able to enjoy the festivities guilt-free!
With all the craziness of supply chain issues, experts are suggesting to get a jump start on holiday shopping this year. Need gift ideas? The Today Show always has great holiday shopping guides.
5. Increase your Emergency fund savings
If this reminder has you going, “oh wait…I still need to do that!”, then get on it! Having a cash cushion to rely on in case the worst should happen is so important. Not only will having these savings provide you such great peace of mind, but you’ll be able to rely on these funds if need be instead of increasing your reliance on credit cards and accruing other debt. As a reminder this should be between 3-6 months worth of living expenses (think: what you spend on groceries, clothes, hobbies, utilities, etc.).
6. Revisit your retirement account holdings
A few times a year, it is incredibly smart to check in on your retirement accounts and rebalance if needed and increase you contributions if possible. We are more than happy to help with guidance on rebalancing retirement plans to stay in line with your other accounts, making sure you are looking out for the whole picture.
7. Protect yourself
When it come to getting life insurance or getting a will made, it is so easy to keep putting those things aside in favor of addressing the important everyday needs. If you’ve been meaning to get these two things taken care of and off of your “to-do” list, make this week the week you finally get them done. The Advance Medical Directive is an easy place to start. You’ll be amazed at how accomplished you’ll feel even just knocking those tasks off the list!
8. Revisit your numbers
If you haven’t checked in on your interest rates and account balances, now might be a good time to do so. If you notice that you’re paying more in interest than you’d like, perhaps it is time to reevaluate your spending habits. On the other hand, if your money isn’t earning as much as you’d like, perhaps consider moving your additional savings to a brokerage account that historically offers substantially higher rates of return than a traditional savings account.
9. Take partners
Have you been feeling a little lost or overwhelmed by this list and/or your own goals? Don’t go it alone. We can help! Reach out to us here for your free consultation and get started today. You’ve got this!
Hope to see you and your family at our Thank Y’all Fall annual client appreciation event tomorrow evening at Great Meadow!