It’s a new year and with it comes new resolutions. At the top of the list is usually something involving exercise, healthy habits, and of course, finances. Even though we all have good intentions, most of us end up in March with those resolutions a distant memory. Yes, of course we want to exercise more and be better with our money, but we also take care of kids, run a home, go to work, shuttle kids to sports, and the other million things we as moms do. What we really need, is to take a step back and focus on the bigger picture. How is your financial wellness? Is it aligned with your goals? January is a perfect time to take a look through your finances and make some changes that could get you closer to working towards your goals.
First, and possibly the hardest for most of us, is the budget. Now is a great time to have an honest conversation with yourself and your spouse/partner. Is your budget realistic? Are there areas where you might be undershooting or even overshooting? Are you able to save money or pay down debt? Knowing your yearly expenses is a very important component in achieving financial wellness.
After you evaluate your budget, you can take a look at your goals. We all have short term goals – summer camp, vacations, and braces to name a few. Then we have our long-term goals – planning for our kids’ college expenses and our eventual retirement. These goals change often so it’s important to revisit and revise them if necessary.
Now is also an excellent time to take a look at your employer benefits. In 2020, the contribution limit for 401(k), 403(b) and 457 plans increased to $19,500 for those under the age of 50 or $26,000 for people over the age of 50. If you or your spouse/partner are currently contributing to your employer’s retirement plan, it is important to make sure that amount aligns with your goals. Do you have an Employee Stock Option Plan or Deferred Compensation Plan you could participate in? Employees often leave benefits on the table because they do not know enough about them or might not even be aware that they exist. Be sure to get in touch with your HR to learn more about what options might be available.
The beginning of a new year can be an overwhelming, but it can also be a great time to start fresh. At Guided Capital Wealth Management, we have developed and refined a process where we put together all the pieces of the financial puzzle to help our clients work towards their goals. Make 2020 the year where you take charge of your financial wellness.
Guided Capital Wealth management is a dba of Merit Financial Group, LLC, an SEC registered investment adviser.