The new year is a good time to get your entire life in order, including your financial life. Most people don’t think too much about ordering their finances, but believe it or not, financial organization is a key to prosperity and building wealth on ANY income.
To get your finances in order, consider doing an Annual Review of all your finances. This review should include at least the following tasks. As you become more adept at good money management, you may want to add additional review items, but for now, use the following list as a guide to conducting the annual review:
- Review your Spending Plan for the last 12 months to be sure you have been able to live with your spending categories and the way you have spent within those categories; adjust categories and spending amounts for each of them as needed.
- Review your savings as it relates to the 60/20/20 Rule. Over the last year have you been able to save at least 1 percent of your monthly income and allocate that savings appropriately between retirement savings, emergency savings, and emotional savings? What do you need to do to better save within each of these categories?
- Review your debt load. How has it decreased over the last year? Run new Get Out of Debt Reports if needed and revise your debt payoff schedule if you need to further accelerate debt payoff. If you have become better at controlling your spending using the Spending Plan and tracking according to that plan then perhaps it’s time to apply a larger accelerator payment to your debt. Is there an asset you can sell to accelerate down debt? Do you need to let go of a collection you could sell and apply the proceeds to debt?
- How well have you kept up on learning the rules of the financial games you are playing over the past year? Do you need to increase the number of articles and books you read to help you stay on top of your finances?
- Review your Retirement Plan. Are you still on track with retirement? Do you need to revise savings amounts, consider additional ways to increase cash flow, or change the way you are savings for retirement?
- Review all financial paperwork including wording for wills, trusts, powers of attorney, deeds, titles, etc. Make sure trusts, deeds, titles, and so forth are worded properly; if you have experienced any life changes in the last year including marriage, divorce, births, deaths, etc., make sure your legal documents are all worded to reflect these changes.
- Review personal papers. Go through your medical, insurance, and personal property information to be sure it is complete and accurate.
- Be sure assets are titled properly.
- Finally, review your tax documentation in preparation for meeting with a CPA for tax preparation. Remember, your accountant does not take care of your taxes, you do!
For more information on how to conduct a thorough and effective Annual Review, contact the experts at Money Mastery: (801) 292-1099.