Monday, December 30, 2013

Some New Year's Resolutions Worth Making

Here are some ideas that will help improve your financial bottom line. 

1.  Create a will and name guardians for minor children. 
2.  Buy term life insurance policies to take care of your family in the unfortunate event that you can't.
3.  Contribute to a company sponsored retirement plan at least up to any match that might be given.
4.  Open a Roth IRA and contribute as much as you can up to the limit for your age and/or income,
5.  Create a realistic budget and stick to it.
6.  Start an emergency fund if you don't have one.  If you do, add to it.
7.  Put some type of savings on auto pilot your checking account so you never have the chance to spend the money first.
8.  Pay down any credit card debt that you may have.
9.  Pay down any other consumer debt that you might have.
10.  Pay down your mortgage.
11.  Start a college account for each of your children.
12.  Watch Suze Orman every Saturday night that you can.  I am a Suze fan, although some people are not.  As with anything do your own research.
13.  Create a menu plan using those items lurking in your cupboards, refrigerator and freezer.  Make a list of what you need to complete those meals.  Stick to your list when you go to the store!
14.  Cut down on how often you eat out.
15.  Commit to making multiples when you make lasagna or other casseroles and freeze the extras.  Pull one out when you don't feel like cooking instead of picking up the phone and ordering a pizza.  Do this at least x number of times per month.
16.  Find some free things that your family will enjoy doing and DO THEM!
17.  Find parents with different work schedules than yours and do some free babysitting for each other.
18.  Learn to coupon.  Do it reasonably.
19.  Color your own hair instead of going to a salon.
20.  Find someone to carpool with.
21.  Give up an expensive habit.
22.  Start a change jar.  You can even throw in dollar bills!
23.  Get a library card.
24.  Commit to calling utility and insurance companies to try and get better rates.
25.  Learn to use a slow cooker.
26.  Have x number of no spend days per week.
27.  Teach your kids about money. 
28.  Organize your paperwork.
29.  Donate to a charity or a worthy cause.

I have done all of these (except #17) over the years with varying levels of success.  GOOD LUCK!

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