4 Easy Things To Do Financially in the New Year

  1. Track Your Net Worth
  2. Look at Your Spending Categories
  3. Evaluate Your Budget
  4. Set a Financial Goal


Track Your Net Worth

Start an excel spreadsheet, a notebook, a sticky pad – anything where you can current write down your net worth. To be able to grow your wealth, you will want to start tracking how your net worth is impacted.

Your net worth is comprised of all of your assets (house, art, car, furniture, money, valuables, etc) minus your liabilities (car insurance, mortgage, student loans). You might be surprised at the number. Each month you want to do this calculation and work towards moving your net worth to more and more.

Total time spent: 15 minutes / 5 minutes if you have tracked your net worth before)


Look at Your Spending Categories

Write down (or print out) all of your spending for Oct, Nov, Dec (probably your most heavy spending months). And then for each month group how much you spent in general categories, eating out, gas, rent, cell phone, etc.

How do you like your spending? Was it within your original budget? Did you not have a budget but you cant believe you spent $300 a month on eating out? Highlight the areas where you want to improve. Chances are, if it is worrisome in the latter part of the year, they probably were not that great at the rest of the year either.

Total time spent: 20 minutes / 10 minutes if you have tracked via Mint.com, PersonalCapital.com, etc before)


Evaluate Your Budget

Take your last month’s expenses and do a work back budget. (and I know that December was a holiday month, so there can be some unusual factors). Take your expenses for the month (on your debit and credit cards) and subtract them from your income. For example:

Gas – $20

Cell Phone – $50

Rent – $1250

Dog Supplies – 21.99

Gas – $21


And say your income was $4000 for December, subtract the (currently, $1362.99) and see where you end up.

Chances are, you might be in the negative for the month, meaning you over spent.

Next steps are to determine what of the expenses could you go with out, or possibly, how you can increase your income.

Total time spent: 20 minutes / 10 minutes if you have tracked via Mint.com, PersonalCapital.com, etc before)


Set a Financial Goal

Similar to New Year’s Resolutions, you will want to set a goal that will positively impact your finances. The goal can be small, like start a savings account for emergencies or a large one, like set up a plan to become a millionaire. Either way, you want to make sure that a goal is set so that you have something to work towards.

Write down your goal where you can see it.

Total time spent: 5 minutes / 30 seconds to write it down where you can see it)

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