Summertime is in full force here in the Tri-State: it’s hot and sticky, the kids or grandkids are already driving you nuts, and you have a thousand things to do before you head out on vacation.
So amid all the craziness, we know the last thing you’re probably thinking about are your finances and retirement plan. But carving out a little time over the next few weeks to give yourself a check-up can really pay off. Think of it like your 2018 mid-year status report.
Some questions to consider:
- Have you been saving in your 401(k) like you told yourself you would at the beginning of the year? Are you on track to hit your contribution goals for 2018?
- Are you consistently contributing to other accounts you own, like your Roth IRA? The kids’ 529 college savings plan?
- Does your emergency fund need to be replenished? (We recommend it can cover 3 to 6 months of your essential living expenses.)
- How’s your family budget looking? Have you been on budget or over budget for most of the year?
- If you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA), how much have you spent so far this year? Since it’s probably “use it or lose it,” are you on track to spend down your remaining amount?
- Have you checked your credit report lately for any mistakes or suspicious activity? Your credit score?
- Has anything in your life changed that would warrant an adjustment to your investment mix?
- Do you have any new short-term goals, such as buying a new car or remodeling the house?
- Do you have any new retirement goals?
Yes, this is a lot. We get it. But this list is honestly just the tip of the iceberg. These types of questions are important to regularly think about, especially since their answers can have big ramifications on your money and retirement plan down the road.
The Simply Money Point
Just like life, your financial situation is constantly changing. Month-to-month, year-to-year, your money deserves your full attention. Take the time to make your financial future a priority – no matter how crazy life may get.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it could make sense to start working with a financial planner to help you get organized, see the big picture, and improve your money mindset.
And to help you learn more about retirement planning and how to select a financial advisor, you’ll find free downloadable guides and online tutorials in our new “Retirement Resources” library.