How to Start on the Right Financial Foot

By Michelle Brennan, FPQPTM

Here's how

  • Gather your data

    Start by taking stock of all things financial in your life, your income and expenses, your assets, including your retirement accounts, and your liabilities, your insurance policies, your income tax returns, and your wills, trusts and other estate planning documents.
     

  • Set goals and objectives

    You especially want to categorize your goals and objectives by time horizons so that you can measure and monitor your progress.
     

  • Find tax efficient ways to save
    It’s not what you earn but what you keep, and the same is true when it comes to saving. There are tax-efficient ways to save for retirement, which include IRA’s, Health Savings Accounts and annuities.
     

  • Manage your risks

    Not having the right kinds and amounts of insurance in place can wreak havoc on your financial plan should you face a dramatic event.
     

  • Monitor progress towards your goals

    You can’t measure what you don’t track. Commit not to just starting the year off on the right financial foot but to monitoring your plan throughout the year.
     

  • Meet with your financial professional

    Reviewing your plan can go a long way toward helping you reach your financial goals.