Many of us start the year with the resolution to “get in shape”. That’s a great resolution assuming you mean get in “financial” shape! You have plenty of time now and later to get physically fit but time might be running out to get financially fit. Remember, no one is going to give you a loan for retirement and think about all the time you’ll have in retirement to get into shape.
Vow to do one or all five of these financial tasks in 2016 and you are sure to feel really good about the shape you are in by the end of the year!
- If you are employed and your company has a 401(k) plan (or variation, SEP, SIMPLE, etc) CONTRIBUTE! If your employer adds a match then CONTRIBUTE up to the max amount they are matching.
- If you do not have a company sponsored plan but have earned income then CONTRIBUTE to an IRA. Either a regular or a Roth IRA. Depending on your income you can contribute up to $5,500 for 2016. If you are older than 50 you can contribute an additional $1,000 for a total of $6,500.
- Make sure your insurance needs are up-to-date. Remember you should insure against those things you cannot afford to lose so look at your; home owners, auto, term, and disability insurance needs. Insurance in itself is not an investment.
- Make sure your will or estate plan is up-to-date. Has anything changed in your life since the beginning of 2015? Make sure your plan is updated to reflect any changes.
- If you have credit card debt set up a plan to pay off the highest interest rate card first making minimum payments on the other cards until the highest one is paid off first. Then work your way down.
By doing one, or hopefully all, you will be sticking to a New Year’s resolution. How often have you been able to do that?