With the new year right around the corner, you may have started to think about setting some resolutions. Getting your finances in order is a great way to start the New Year, so if this is one of your resolutions, here are a few ways to get started:
Create a monthly spending plan
It’s important to know where your money is going. If you’re not sure, start tracking for at least one full month. Then, take a look at where you stand at the end of the month. If you find that there is more money going out than coming in, it’s time to review the plan for areas where you may be able to reduce or eliminate spending.
What expenses are most important to you and your family’s well being? Top priorities typically include rent or mortgage, utilities, vehicle payments and insurance. Make sure your top priorities are paid first and that there is enough money during the month to pay them on time. If you’re in a position where you need to look at reducing expenses, start with the priorities at the bottom of the list.
Pull a credit report
It’s free and easy! Visit http://www.annualcreditreport.com/ to request reports from three major bureaus: Equifax, TransUnion and Experian. Review the reports for accuracy. If you find any errors, take steps to dispute them or they could possibly cause damage to your credit. Continue to do this at least once every year.
Establish an emergency savings
This can help when unexpected expenses undoubtedly come along. You can use this account to pay for emergencies instead of looking to borrow money or charge with added interest. Put away what you can afford to – even small amounts with add up over time!
Sometimes taking the first step on the path towards financial wellness can be the most difficult, so let Clearpoint Credit Counseling Solutions help! Schedule an appointment for a no-cost debt review and credit counseling session, where a Financial Specialist can work with you to create a spending plan and explore debt repayment options. Make 2012 a great year for financial health!