Can you believe that the new year is right around the corner? It feels like 2019 just flew by! With a new year comes new opportunities for your finances, which is why it is important to set goals and resolutions for yourself and your family. Did you know that only eight percent of people who set New Year’s resolutions actually achieve their goals? If you are looking to shape up your finances in 2020 and follow through with your financial goals, keep on reading!
Budgets Are Your Friend
Having a budget is something everyone can benefit from. Budgets are useful in that they help you stay within range of your financial expenses, as well as hold you accountable for your past and current expenses. Now, it may seem like budgeting is tough to do, but if you start early enough, you will likely get in the habit of it in no time. Budgeting is a commitment but starting out with simply making a list is a great way to hold yourself accountable. You could write down one to two things per night to start out! For example, nowadays, almost 60% of Americans have cut the cord, meaning they’ve gotten rid of cable and are leaning towards more streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Disney Plus.
Track Your Spending
By looking at your past expenditures, you are able to see what essential purchases were and what were nonessential purchases that you could live without. Rather than ordering UberEats, GrubHub, or DoorDash for lunch every day, why not try to prepare some meals ahead of time? Purchasing meals from food delivery services is something that is great if you happen to forget your lunch or do not feel like preparing a meal, however, when it becomes a habit to order each meal, those costs add up! Keeping a handwritten log or using a mobile app like Albert or Mint can help you keep track of your spending in the new year! You can even set reminders to keep you in the habit of tracking!
Pay Down Your Credit Card
You have had the same credit card for a few years now. You pay a little here and there, maybe $50-$100 at a time, raising your interest even more. Let’s say you get a raise in 2020. You did not have the raise before, so why not start paying down your credit card? Paying your credit down in bigger chunks rather than smaller payments keeps you from giving all of your money to credit card companies in the long run.
Now, as the new year quickly approaches, it is never too early (or late) to start shaping up your finances. You could even start now with a pen and paper or simply the download of a budgeting app. If you commit to a budget, start tracking your spending, and pay down those pesky credit card bills, you are bound to have a better grip on your finances in the new year!