10 Tips For Financial Wellness

July 25, 2017

Tax season is when people typically focus on finances, but managing money wisely should be a year-round priority. “Review income, expenses, savings and investments, and commit to making a few simple changes each month to improve financial health,” suggests Brian Alexander, founder and managing partner of Alexander and Associates. Here are ten tips to get started:

  1. Create a plan
    Put together a monthly expense report and develop a budget. Knowing where money goes can help you set parameters for living expenses, bills, savings, and discretionary spending.
  2. Automate savings
    Pay yourself first! Set up an automatic transfer to a savings account after each payday. Aim to save at least six months’ salary for emergencies.
  3. Consider moving
    Rent is the biggest culprit for swallowing up a paycheck. Evaluate your current living situation and potentially cheaper options. Rent should be no more than 25-30% of overall income.
  4. Carry cash
    Handing over dollar bills for each purchase will create more awareness about the amount of money being spent and help reduce impulsive spending.
  5. Save for retirement
    Contribute the maximum amount allowed to your company’s 401(k) — check to see if employees receive matching funds — or set up a personal retirement savings plan and make regular contributions.
  6. Pay off debt
    Make a plan for paying off loans and credit card balances as quickly as possible to reduce interest and improve your credit score.
  7. Brush up on negotiation skills
    Don’t pay more than necessary for purchases, memberships and services. Compare prices to figure out how to get the most value, and know when it’s time to switch vendors.
  8. Set goals
    To pay off debt or save for buying a home, set clear long-term goals with short-term objectives to stay on track.
  9. Build financial literacy
    Stocks, bonds, CDs, college funds, tax deductions, interest rates — there is a lot to learn about finances. Know what assets you have, where they’re located, and what financial options are available to ensure a strong financial future.
  10. Consult an expert
    Contact your EAP for financial consultation services, DIY tools and documents and more information and resources to help improve financial well-being.

For financial consultations and resources, contact your Employee Assistance Program (EAP).