2016 is almost here, and with it comes New Year’s Resolutions. Many decide to get in better physical shape, make a big career move, quit smoking, or spend more time with family. All of these things are fantastic, but I would challenge you to start thinking about some money moves to make in the new year. Below are 5 Big Time Money Moves that you can make progress towards in 2016…
Stop neglecting your estate planning
The most neglected component of a sound financial plan is the estate planning component. The estate planning can is continually kicked further and further down the road. The majority of adults in the United States do not have a simple will done. Also, we often find that beneficiary designations on retirement accounts (which trump a will!) are often not up-to-date.
Some important elements of a good estate plan:
- A will to nominate guardians and spell out your final wishes
- A living trust to determine how you want property distributed upon your death. This is especially important if you have minor children. A living trust can help you to avoid probate (big hassle) and have your assets passed to your beneficiaries while avoiding courts.
- A power of attorney to address who handles your financial matters upon your death or incapacity.
- A health-care directive to appoint the individual(s) you wish to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.
Have a life insurance needs analysis done
How much life insurance do you really need? Is the amount you currently have based on your goals and wishes? A sound financial plan should identify how much you really NEED so that you aren’t over or underinsured. Don’t get pressured into buying insurance that you aren’t sure you need from someone like this…
CASH RESERVES… have them!
Can you withstand a financial emergency? MORE THAN HALF of Americans have less than one month of income readily accessible. Emergency savings of 3-6 months should be a goal to accomplish in 2016. Don’t let a short-term financial emergency cause long-term damage. Have a back-up financial plan.
Increase your retirement savings
Nearly 29% of adults age 55 and over have NEITHER a retirement account or pension, according to the Government Accountability Office. This is extremely startling. What’s more, adults ages 55-64 have a median retirement account balance of $104,000. A balance of $104,000 would make running out of money in retirement a good probability. We have a savings dilemma in this country, here are 6 ways to increase your retirement plan savings.
HAVE A PLAN
34% of Americans have done NOTHING to plan for their financial future. Would you go on a week vacation without any planning on what you’ll be doing? Most likely not. But people will often head into retirement with no plan on how to take distributions from their assets while also making those assets last throughout retirement. A sound financial plan can help you to REMOVE THE GUESSWORK and uncertainty about retirement and your financial future.
Stop putting off these important elements of your financial future. Even making subtle changes now can pay huge dividends in the long run. If you need help turning these strategies into reality, please reach out to me.
Have a very Happy and Blessed New Year!