October is Financial Planning Month
Some people hear the words "financial planning" and think it sounds like a difficult, time-consuming task best left to experts. However, financial planning is something that everyone can and should do for themselves. Sure, everyone should check in with an expert, and there are some complicated financial matters that necessitate it, but there is no reason why you cannot handle your daily personal finances with ease.
To be your own financial planner and keep your financial life running smoothly, consider these steps:
- Get educated. Make sure you know the meanings of the financial terms you regularly hear, what kind of retirement plan you have, and what your life and disability insurance covers.
- Be aware of your financial reality. How much debt do you have? How much do you have saved? How's your retirement plan look? Go over your budget to get a clear picture of where you stand.
- Speaking of budgets…Have one. Create a simple budget that allocates money for bills, debt payment, saving, retirement funds, and discretionary expenses. It doesn't have to be fancy, it just needs to be accurate and workable for your lifestyle and the amount of money you make. A budget helps you keep your spending under control. To get started, track your spending for a month so you'll know exactly how much money is coming in and how much is going out.
- Take full advantage of employer-assisted saving. Save enough in your retirement plan to get the company match. Contribute the maximum to your HSA (health savings account). Take full advantage of your FSA (flexible spending account), taking care to accurately estimate your yearly expenses and contribute accordingly.
The information mentioned in this article is for informational purposes only, is intended to provide general guidance and does not constitute legal or tax advice. Each person's situation is unique and may materially differ from the information provided herein. You should seek the advice of a financial professional, tax consultant and/or legal counsel to address your specific needs before any financial or other commitments regarding the issues related to your situation are made. Popular Bank does not make any representations or warranties as to the content contained herein and disclaims any and all liability resulting from any use of or reliance on such content.
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