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Your Financial Wellness Checklist for the Beginning of the Year

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Your financial well-being is extremely important, and there's no better time to set your goals than at the beginning of the year. When you create a financial wellness checklist, you'll know where you stand now and, more important, how to achieve your financial aspirations for the future.

Why an annual financial deep dive is essential

Performing an annual financial deep dive is a crucial step in achieving and maintaining your financial wellness. It's the perfect time to review your finances, set new goals, and make any necessary adjustments to your budget and spending habits. By taking a closer look at your existing finances, you'll better understand what steps you can take now, to realize your long-term financial dreams.

The main benefit of this analysis is in assessing how your budget needs have changed in the last year. By reviewing your expenses, you can identify areas in which you are overspending and decide if cuts are possible. You can also evaluate unexpected expenses that may have come into play and determine if they might recur in the future.

As you begin, think of January as your financial wellness month, and check these items off your financial wellness checklist: 
  • Review your budget. Take a close look at your expenses from the past year and explore how you can cut back or make adjustments.
  •  Set financial goals. Whether it's saving for a down payment on a house, paying off credit card debt, or building an emergency fund, you're more likely to stay on track if you set specific, measurable financial goals as early as possible.
  •  Check your credit score. Your credit score can affect your ability to qualify for a loan or credit card, and it can impact the terms and interest rates you'll be offered. You can receive a free annual copy of your credit report and work to improve your score if necessary.
  •  Review your insurance coverage. Make sure you have both the right type and the right amount of coverage for your needs.
  •  Consider a retirement account. Consider opening a retirement account, such as a Roth IRA, to start saving for your future.
  •  Assess your investment portfolio. Examine your investments, to confirm they still align with your risk tolerance and your financial goals.
  •  Review your beneficiary details. Make sure your accounts and insurance policies carry updated beneficiary information.
  •  Check for unwanted subscriptions. You shouldn’t be losing money on annual, monthly, or weekly subscriptions you no longer need. The beginning of the year is a particularly good time to review your media subscriptions — you might be surprised at how many you no longer use.
  •  Seek advice if needed. If you have questions about your finances and aren't sure where to start, consider seeking the advice of a financial advisor.
  • Seed your emergency fund. Before the first quarter slips away, you'll want to ensure your emergency fund for the year is on track.
Now is the perfect time to review your financial well-being and spark changes that will improve your future.
Power Financial Credit Union can guide you in fulfilling your immediate needs and your long-term goals — contact us today, for all the expert advice you'll need to ensure your financial wellness for 2023 and far beyond.