How can you plan for retirement? In this blog post, we discuss 5 tips to help you get financially ready for this big milestone.
Springtime signals new beginnings and fresh starts. Just like you took on spring cleaning in your home, it’s also a good idea to tackle financial spring cleaning. Financial spring cleaning means taking some time to review your spending, savings, budget, and other money-related habits. It’s all about ensuring you have the best financial plan for your life, which is unique for each individual. Here, we go through some steps to help you out with your financial spring cleaning this year.
Go through existing subscriptions
First, let us begin by saying you don’t have to cancel your subscription for Netflix, so don’t worry about that. However, this is a good time to go through all your subscriptions and see if there’s any you don’t use, or completely forgot about. Many of us fall victim to the seven-day trial model that automatically turns into a monthly subscription once we forget to cancel. Don’t be surprised to find you’re subscribed to six different streaming services, for example. You might also still be receiving magazines you no longer read, subscription boxes you only meant to try once, and apps you buried in your phone months ago. If any of these sound relatable, it’s time to hunt down the subscriptions you no longer need and cancel them. Unfortunately, many companies make it an irritating task to cancel their subscriptions in the hopes you will give up and keep paying, but be persistent! This is an easy form of financial spring cleaning that can save you lots of money each month, depending on your subscription habits.
Plan out your future payments
Some of our payments are predictable, and part of financial spring cleaning can be to organize your payment schedule. If your bills for rent, utilities, car payments, and subscriptions come on the same days each month, mark these on your calendar along with the amount you will owe. Be sure to earmark the amount you need and keep it aside for that use. When you have money set aside for specific purposes, you’ll be organized and ready to go once the bills come in. You can also automate your payments to ensure you never miss one. Staying on top of your payments and knowing when you owe money is a great habit to get into. Once you know how much you need to use for these expenses each month, it will be easier for you to plan your finances.
Is it time to consider investing?
Should you use financial spring cleaning as a time to further your own financial reach? Investing doesn’t have to be scary, and you can do as much as you’re comfortable with. You don’t have to buy an investment property, or put all your money into Bitcoin. You can start with small investments to see how you enjoy the process and whether you think the payoff is worth it. Stocks, bonds, and mutual funds are all common ways Canadians can invest, with varying degrees of risk and potential payoff. You can read more about investing here. It’s important to understand the risks and rewards of investing before you jump into it, but there are smart and safe ways to invest.
In 2022, one of the best ways to tackle financial spring cleaning is to go digital. This means using banking apps and automated payments to keep your finances at your fingertips, easily accessible and easy to track. You can also look into budgeting apps to help you organize your finances even better. Budgeting apps have various systems and setups, but they all aim to help you manage your money and savings for your own unique goals. You can track your spending, connect accounts with partners or spouses, and mark money for certain expenses. All of these can make it easier to see where your finances are going and how they’re managed.
Review spending and saving goals
If you created financial-related New Year’s resolutions back in January, you can take this time to check in on them. Even if you didn’t, it’s probably still a good time to review your spending and savings in any case. Most of us have some sort of goals for our money, and financial spring cleaning can mean taking some time to review or renew them. If you have existing goals, see if you’re on track with them, or if you need to do some tweaking. Determine if you need to work on spending less, putting more aside into a savings account, or if you’re doing well without any revisions.
Financial spring cleaning isn’t always an enjoyable experience, much like regular spring cleaning. However, we think it’s an important part of understanding your money and your budget, and how to best manage them. Following these steps can help make the process a bit easier and more effective for you.
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