One of the areas I want to improve in my life this year is finance. In 2017, I made some major strides by purchasing my first house. I know you’re not all in the home-buying stage or you may be past that, so I’m keeping it simple. Today I’m sharing 8 financial goals to set for 2018.
Photo: Elliot Janssen
Keep a budget planner.
If you aren’t currently budgeting, there’s never a better time to start! I shared a post (linked above) about how I use my budget planner. My mom uses an Excel spreadsheet, but I need something tangible in front of me that I can review.
2. Set a certain amount to save each month.
Whether this is $5 or $200, building up your savings account should be a goal on your list. You truly never know when something is going to happen out of the blue and you’ll need extra money – usually this is car issues.
3. Start or solidify an emergency fund.
It’s best to have a baseline of having what it would take to live for three months saved up. Life can be unexpected.
4. Start investing.
If you have a few hundred dollars, it may be fun to open an account online at TD Ameritrade and familiarize yourself with the stock market. If you have a few thousand, I would recommend meeting with a financial advisor and setting up a personalized game plan.
5. Combine your 401(K)’s.
This was something I did last year. If you’ve worked at multiple jobs, condense your 401(K)’s into one account that puts you in the best financial situation for your future goals.
6. Plan a budget-friendly trip.
One of my 2018 goals is to travel out of the country, and I’d like to do so on a budget. Because of where I’m at, I’m not going to go gallivanting in Europe, but probably to Canada to some of the most beautiful National Parks. I feel like travel has been cheaper than ever lately, and it’s a goal to see how to add a trip into your budget.
7. Rid yourself of debt.
This is a pretty obvious one, but maybe the most important. Did you realize credit card debt could be costing you more interest-wise than student loans? I like to follow the Dave Ramsey method and pay off cards with the lowest amounts first (usually in full after a use, hello Victoria’s Secret every year there’s an 8 for $35 sale).
8. Open a credit card that will earn you rewards.
If you do not have a credit card at all now, it’s actually healthy to open one and will help you when it comes to purchasing a car or a home and having equity. My first was Victoria’s Secret, and although I have used it three times in the last three years (lol), it still makes me look like a great card holder when I pay it off immediately and I get rewards. I have heard some of the best are Southwest, Chase (for cash), Scheels and I’m an advocate for Nordstrom.
Implementing any of these financial goals at the beginning of the year makes you more likely to succeed throughout! Trying to do all of them at once may be a bit much, but picking 2-3 financial goals to start off 2018 will help you begin a long-term plan and be on the route to pursuing financial success 🙂