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Six Steps for Improving Your Financial Wellness in 2018

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Six Steps for Improving Your Financial Wellness in 2018

When reflecting on the past year and setting New Year’s Resolutions, what was your biggest regret? Like over two-thirds of Americans, you probably have some financial regrets. Whether you didn’t save as much as you had hoped or you didn’t pay down your debt, you probably didn’t quite reach your goal for 2017.

The New Year is about setting new goals and learning from the prior year’s mistakes. So rather than creating a resolution to save money or pay down debt, it’s time to make financial wellness your New Years’ Resolution. Much like how overall wellness is about balance and knowing what you need physically, spiritually, and mentally, financial wellness is understanding your financial situation and following behaviors that help your current and long term monetary goals.

Keeping New Year’s Resolutions can be hard, but with these six steps you can prepare yourself for a year of successful financial wellness.

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 Set a Specific Financial Goal

Goals are more easily   achieved when you have a   specific target. For example,   if you want to save for your   dream vacation, determine the cost of the trip   and a deadline. If you set specific goals, you can benchmark your success without a problem. (Remember: It is important to remember to make your   goal achievable and to consider all your expenses).

pexels-photo-221534Create a Budget and Stick to It

Design a road map to success. Rather than saying you wish to save $10,000 this year for retirement, decide how you will achieve this goal. When  producing a budget for the year, start with a monthly goal. First, subtract your monthly expenses from your income. Then, decide how much of your  remaining income you need to save from each paycheck to reach your overall objective.

 pexels-photo-196639Track Your Spending

 Make a spreadsheet to track   your income and expenses to   ensure you are sticking to   your budget. Don’t wait for   the credit card statement to   come in   the mail— track each transaction throughout the month. By watching what you spend, as you spend it, you can accurately evaluate if you are within your   budget and make adjustments as needed.

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Eliminate Unnecessary Expenses

It may be convenient to stop  for coffee on your way to  work, or order takeout when  you don’t feel like cooking,  but these little luxuries add  up and could  be costing you hundreds a month. We aren’t saying you can’t treat yourself every once in a while, but set a limit on how much you can spend on these  unnecessary expenses. You may be surprised at how much money is left at the end of the month, when you make a few small sacrifices.

 Start Investingpexels-photo-590011

 Often we hear, “I don’t have   the money to be investing,”   but you don’t have to invest   thousands of dollars each   year. You can start your   investments     with as little   as $20 a month, because by the end of the year that is $240. It’s called micro investing, and it makes it easy for you to start investing small   amounts now that will grow overtime, making you more money in the future.

pexels-photo-339620Think About Your  Long-Term Financial  Plan

Financial wellness is all about  long-term goals and planning.  When setting your long-term  goals, think about future spending scenarios; answer questions like, “do I plan on having children?”, “when will I need to purchase a new car?”, “when will my mortgage be paid off?”, “how close is retirement?” Addressing these questions will help you determine your long -term goals and plan for a financially fit future.

As you start thinking about your resolution for 2018, these six steps can help ensure you will reach your financial goals for 2018.

At Duncan Financial Group, we understand money matters and your money matters to you, that is why we offer services that work together to assist you on your journey to financial wellness. For support in achieving your goals this year contact us at (724) 863-3420. We can walk you through the steps and ensure you have the financial plan that fits your needs.