Spring Clean Your Finances
Spring is in the air! Since spring has sprung, many people find themselves cleansing their house after winter and preparing for better weather. While you may be doing this in your house or car, it is also a good time to do this with your money. Cleaning up your finances starts with taking a look at your cash flow and what you are spending each month. You may be surprised to find this small simple step can help you find that extra money you need to help protect, save, and grow wealth for your financial future. Let’s start with some simple tips:
#1: Set Reminders for Bills and Savings
Make sure you have set reminders for bills that occur at regular intervals. This could be anything from online subscriptions, memberships, daycare, vet bills, gifts, insurance premiums, mortgages and more. Look into automatic payments. Many times, automating bills saves you some money. Also, make you’re saving like a bill! Set a reminder or automate your bank account so that you will put that little bit of extra money away each month. But, just because you automate your bills and savings does not mean that you can just forget about them. Make sure you are still looking every month at these payments so you know exactly how much you’re spending.
#2: Check Your Credit Score
Check your credit score every month. A lot of places online allow you to do this for free, and a lot of credit cards have started giving this as a free services. Your credit score is extremely important, and shows how financially responsible you are. Knowing your credit score will help eliminate any surprises when it’s time to make big purchases. This is why paying your bills on time is so important. One late payment can drop your credit score more 20 points. And don’t forget to pay those parking tickets! If those go unpaid, you could be answering to a collections agency, which means a hit to your credit score.
#3: Take Stock of Your Subscriptions
Do you have Spotify, Apple Music, Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Showtime, Birchbox, Wine of the Month Club, FunFitFab, Blue Apron, Stitch Fix or any other subscription services? I know that these services seems like a great deal. $3.99 a month here, $9.99 a month there. But having a of these can really add up to a lot! Do your really need to be paying for Apple Music, Spotify, and Pandora? People can easily spend up to $300 a month on subscription services. Don’t let this be you! Try to consolidate or get rid of some of your subscription services. This could end up saving you a lot of money.
#4: Make an Appointment with Your Financial Adviser
When you’re taking stock of all of your finances, that’s a great time to get in touch with your financial adviser. Are you on track for retirement? Have you consolidated all of your 401(K)’s? Are you overpaying for insurance? Are you protecting your income? These are all things that you should go over with your financial adviser to make sure your financial strategy is still working effectively and efficiently.
Addressing your cash flow is one of the five components of your Leap Model. By cleaning out the cobwebs of your monthly budget, you can start to focus your energy on getting you where you really want to be. Talk to your Leap Adviser to make spring cleaning your finances sane, sound, and simple.