Dec 30th 2016 - by Amanda Perkins
Every year we challenge ourselves with big, extreme resolutions that can sometimes be hard to keep. Why not set yourself realistic goals based on your personal financial situation? If saving $10,000 is not reasonable for you, don’t set your goal that high just to be let down. Focus on what is important to you and what aspects of your finances you wish to really tackle. Sit down and look back at the last year. Think about what bothered you most in regards to your spending and saving habits and go from there.
We are here to help you decide what New Year’s resolutions are the right ones to make for 2017!
1) Prioritize your debts
Don’t necessarily try and tackle every loan or credit card debt you have in one year, but consider which ones you need to pay down first. Look at interest rates, balances owing, then go from there. You want to get rid of the debt with the highest interest rate first. Focus on an amount that you can increase your payments by and try to stick to that for the whole year. See how much faster you can pay off that high interest loan.
2) Get rid of accounts with high service fees
With all the different banking options these days, there are plenty of options available to you, so be aware if your current financial institution is not providing you with the most competitive fees. If you have multiple accounts at different institutions, consider the services each can provide, including free monthly features offered if you are willing to amalgamate all your banking into one. Often, the more business you do with one financial institution, the less expensive things can be! Don’t waste money on daily banking service fees if you don’t have to.
3) Start a change jar
For 2 years, I threw all my loose change into a change jar to accumulate and collect. I never once noticed not having the spare change in my pocket or car but I did love counting the money at my goal date and reach over $1000. I was able to put my spare change towards buying a new couch for myself when I moved. This was a huge expense taken off my list by using that change jar. Think about something you would love to buy for yourself at the end of the year and use the change you have saved up towards it. You will be shocked at how much you have if you commit to it.
4) Set up Automatic Transfers into a savings account
No matter how much or little you want to put aside, any amount helps! Set up an automatic transfer into any type of savings account every time you get paid. This is one resolution we can’t stress enough. It’s a great way to save without ever realizing it’s gone. Start off small, even $15 a pay can add up. It’s great to have money set aside in case of an emergency, towards your retirement or for a rainy day.
Good Luck in 2017!