Believe it or not, the holidays are right around the corner. We all know how the end of every year tends to go – in a frenzied sprint, leaving most non-holiday related tasks shelved until January.
How about getting your personal finances buttoned up now, before all the hustle and bustle? Then you can enjoy the holiday season and be poised to take on a fresh new year with confidence.
Presenting your guide for tidying up your finances before the holidays:
- Review your investment portfolio. Get a handle on where your money is and how it’s invested. Review the fees on your accounts, the performance, and your investment allocation. Consider consolidating accounts to simplify things. If you have multiple 401k accounts from previous jobs, for example, check into rolling the funds over to a single retirement account instead.
- Call your financial advisor. Even if your personal finances are humming along just fine, it’s a good idea to check in with your financial advisor before year end. Getting on the same page with your advisor on a regular basis is always beneficial. This is especially important if your financial plan has aged. If your plan needs some touching up, get it taken care of now.
- Give to worthy causes. Donating funds is a great idea any time of year. If you haven’t already given to local, national, or international non-profit organizations, do a little something before the holiday shopping gets out of hand. Even a small amount can make a big difference. Feel good about yourself by giving some of your hard-earned money to good causes.
- Contribute to your annual savings buckets. We’re talking retirement savings, HSA contributions, 529 plan contributions, emergency funds. Many people steadily contribute to these savings buckets as the months go by, but things happen. If time has gotten away from you, make sure you get these savings opportunities taken care of. While you’re at it, set up automated deposits for next year so you don’t have to think about it.
- Review your legal paperwork. Check over your legal documents, such as wills, trusts, medical directives, and any other estate planning paperwork to confirm it’s still up to date. Legal paperwork is extremely important and often neglected as time goes by. Make it a habit to do a detailed review at least annually to make sure no changes need to be made.
- Update your beneficiary designations. Check your beneficiaries on retirement accounts and insurance policies. Make sure they are accurate, especially if you have gone through any big life events, like a change in your marital status or family situation.
That’s it! If you have any questions or need any other guidance to get your financial wellness in tip top shape by year end, we’re always here to help. Don’t hesitate to reach out.