With the New Year right around the corner, now is the time to start making your resolutions for 2020. While many people choose to focus on health-related resolutions, January is a great time to reevaluate your finances and gain financial control of the coming year. According to U.S. news, nearly 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail by the second week of February. However, these four financial resolutions are S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely) and are simple enough to stick with all year long.
Track and Prioritize Your Spending
Whether you’ve spent your entire life budgeting your money or are looking to get back on track, monitoring your spending is a good place to start. You might consider starting by reviewing your spending habits over the last year, identify where you seem to spend the most money, and brainstorm ways you’d like to cut back. You can track your weekly and monthly expenses by hand, spreadsheets, or by using an app on your smartphone.
Meet with Your Financial Advisor
Your financial advisor is the best person to give you advice and help you set financial goals because of their familiarity with your specific financial situation. You might consider reviewing your investment allocations and together set goals for the coming year. Some of your goals could include giving to your favorite charities, reevaluating your will, or making financial plans for a vacation in the next year.
Plan for Health Care Expenses
Health care is not only expensive, but it’s hard to predict exactly what your needs will be in the next several years. That’s why it’s a good idea to have both proper coverage and additional savings that can cover unexpected expenses. The best way to plan for your health care needs is by being proactive and staying healthy. Here are a few ideas to help keep you safe and healthy, while also avoiding hospital visits.
- Use a life alert pendant. In the case of a fall or severe injury, these pendants can be programmed to call emergency services for help.
- Get familiar with your health insurance. Whether you’ve just changed your Medicare plan or can’t remember the specifics of your policy, now is a good time to review the fine print.
- Remember to get your exercise. Walking, building your muscles, and eating a well-balanced diet will help keep you safe, while also protecting you from unseen health care expenses.
Protect Your Credit
Unexpected expenses can happen to anyone, no matter how prepared or careful you are with your finances. If something does happen, and debt is unavoidable, you’ll want to be sure your credit history is in a good place in the event you have to borrow. Here are a few ways you can protect and improve your credit score:
- Make automatic payments for your monthly bills. This allows you to pay your credit card bills on time without having to write a check or pay online. One late payment can hurt your credit score.
- Understand the safety measures set on your credit card and bank accounts. In the event your bank account or credit card is compromised, you’ll want your bank to call you and immediately freeze your card. You might consider keeping a contact number for your bank in a safe and accessible place.
However you decide to prepare for the New Year, our Carespring facilities in Dayton, Cincinnati, and Northern Kentucky wish you health and happiness all year long!