Planning Your Financial Resolutions for 2016

Claire the Afena Mom Blog

Planning Your Financial Resolutions for 2016

Dec 30, 2015

It's that time of year again; time to assess your habits, your diet, and your savings account. Time to commit to a new set of goals. Time to start 2016 with momentum to change your life for the better. No matter if you're doing well financially or if you have a lot of work to do when it comes to the budget, there are some things we can all do to improve our money situation.

There are three methods for strengthening your finances, and the first two are pretty obvious: spend less or make more. Sounds simple right? Well, we all know that it's not that easy. Let's start with spending less. Do you know how much you're paying for your tv, your phone bills, and your trash pick up? Setting your bills up for automatic payment is a fantastic convenience, and it also means you're not going to let that payment slide, which is good for your credit and your peace of mind. But you do need to keep an eye on those invoices. Just last month I called our television provider to cancel services because it was just too expensive. After only 5 minutes on the phone, that bill had been cut in half, and we really don't notice the difference in programming; turns out we've been overpaying for two years! Do you really use all of the data you're paying for every month on your smartphone? Do yourself a favor. .. take some time and do a little research. You might just save yourself a couple hundred dollars this year.

Next, you can make more. Of course, not everyone receives a raise at the beginning of the year, and we're not all up for a promotion. You can also look into freelance jobs on the side, such as cleaning, writing, or designing. I'm sure most of us have seen the emails claiming you can make thousands from home in just hours a week, but here's a good rule of thumb: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Still, finding some short term gigs is a legitimate way to make some extra cash, just make sure it's a reputable company that you're working for. You can also sell your extra stuff online or hold a rummage. Who knows? Maybe you'll discover a new passion for crafting or designing and start a new career. Once you start looking for the possibilities, they'll be easier and easier to spot.

Finally, there is another way to better handle your finances in 2016, and that is prioritization. One of my top priorities in the past was paying off credit card debt, because it is some of the highest rate debt you can carry, and it is an open ended loan. Choosing where you want to focus your money, whether that's paying down student loans, building an emergency fund, or working towards retirements, is a big piece of your life.

Is 2016 the year you tackle those financial resolutions? Whether your goals are big or small, remember that you don't have to go it alone. Enlist your friends and family to keep you on track, and you can also visit your credit union to make that budget and start conquering that debt. Here's to a successful year to come! I'm Claire, the Afena blog mom. Thanks for reading.