Getting Finances in Order: A New Year

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Now that the new year is upon us, most everyone feels the need to do a better job of handling their money. It is a good time to reassess your financial situation, what your weak points are, what you  have  been doing well, where you can make changes to help improve your bottom line and save more. There are many experts in the field of finance that you could consider helping you plan a path. Everyone should have a plan, a strategy for your short-term and long-term goals.

Here are some strategies to get you rolling:

  • At home expenditures: around 30 %
  • Work/Auto expenditures: 10 – 15 %
  • Debt Management: 15 %
  • Emergency/Safe Money: around 10 %
  • Other expenditures: 20 – 30 %

Of course, these are just guidelines to follow:  your spending will all depend on your own situation, and where you live. Take the time to sit down in a quiet place by yourself or with your spouse away from distractions for about 30 minutes. Determine your income after taxes, what you actually bring home. Then start adding up your expenses (- be honest ), do not leave anything off; in other words,  count all expenses, like movies, latte’s, entertainment, etc. You want to count everything you spend money on, then you can step back and determine what you can trim or cut out all together. If you get into habit of cutting back on unnecessary things then you will find how easy it is to give them up!

Depending on if you are a paid employee or you work for yourself, or if you have a basic retirement account or a large investment portfolio, it is still a good idea to check with a professional on tax issues. Get yourself a filing cabinet and create some folders for your expenses, income, charitable contributions, interest payments, tax payments, education expenses, payroll stubs, etc.

Make the new year a good one; let 2014 be the beginning of new life and a better future!

About the author / 

Juvy Bandiwan

Juvy is a dedicated woman when it comes to her family and her career. As a single mother she has her fair share of juggling family, work and life. Juvy has a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. She has worked in accounting for several companies. As the Career & Finance Editor, she writes from her direct experience. Her column is informative yet easy to read because Juvy writes like she is talking to you directly as a friend.

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