Resolutions for the New Year usually take the form of losing weight, quitting smoking, and making more money. Financial goals are admirable, but instead of aiming to make more money, why not focus on avoiding common mistakes? Here are ten money mistakes to avoid in 2019.
1. Paying the minimum on your credit card debt
Credit card companies make quite a bit off of the interest on your credit card balance. If you are only paying the minimum payment, you are not really getting rid of much debt. Most of the payment goes to fees and interest, which is just a money sink. Cut costs elsewhere and get the debt paid off.
2. Not tracking spending
You should know where every penny of your money goes. It is impossible to save money if you spend it without thinking. Keep track in a notebook, in a spreadsheet or via another method, but do keep track. It will help you with the next step.
3. Not writing out a budget
Everyone needs a budget. Even if you have to stray from it from time to time, it is a good idea to know exactly what your expenses are. If your expenses are more than your income, it is time to make some changes. Sticking to a budget can save you quite a bit of money in the long run and will also alleviate stress.
4. Racking up banking fees
Take a look at all of your bank accounts before January and figure out what fees you are paying. It may be time to check out your options. You should not have to pay a fee for every transaction you make and some banks allow you to set up an account where one monthly fee covers a certain number of transactions.
5. Avoiding a retirement fund
If you are young, retirement can seem far off. This is the perfect time to start saving up for your golden years. Take some time to learn more about your 401k. You should also find out how much you will need to save each month in order to live comfortably in your retirement years.
6. Not writing a will
Any assets you have will need to be sorted out when you die. No one really likes to think about their own demise, but it is essential to plan your estate if you want to ensure that the right people receive your estate.
7. Not having any savings for an emergency
Life may be unpredictable, but you can guarantee that at some point, you will need more money to cover an emergency expense. Plan ahead and keep at least $1,000 in a saving account for when that emergency occurs.
8. Depending on the wrong insurance
Life insurance is the most common type of insurance that people buy. Unfortunately, you are more likely to be injured or develop a disability than to die. If you are unable to work, where will the money come from? For the New Year, look into whether or not your job offers disability insurance and consider signing up.
9. Spending too much
Living beyond your means is very easy to do with credit cards and buy now, pay later programs. A budget is essential to stay on top of things, but you will also need to exercise some self-control. If you don’t actually need something, do not buy it. Your savings account will be better for your decision.
10. Not setting monetary goals
How much do you want to earn in the coming year? Do you have a goal for your savings account? It is essential to set goals so you can be sure to meet them. Too many people leave their finances up in the air, with vague decisions to earn more money. Be specific and you will be more likely to reach your goal.
Planning ahead for 2019 will help you become more successful. If you want to build up a savings account and reach your financial goals this year, you will need to make it happen. Do not just wait for a miracle.