We can all benefit both financially and emotionally, from purposeful financial planning, but getting started may feel daunting. To make it easier, we've outlined ten simple ways that you can get started with financial planning right now.
1. Reflect on your needs and wants, as well as your life goals. Do you want to own a home? Travel the world? Or simply find a bit more pleasure and calm in your everyday life? Think in terms of both shorter and longer-term goals. Financial planning supports all aspects of your life and it involves much more than just planning for the future. It’s about the continuum of your life—which includes today.
2. Talk to your life partner. Money often comes last on the list of relationship conversations, but it should be a priority and is an essential part of family life planning. Plan now to prevent money from potentially becoming a stressor on your relationship.
3. Talk to your kids. It’s never too early to teach your children the value of money and the importance of good financial habits.
4. Talk to a financial planning professional who can help you make sense of it all. CFP professionals are uniquely qualified to look at the big picture to create financial strategies to meet your life goals. Learn what to look for in a planner, what to ask and how the planning process works.
5. Track your spending so you know where your money is going. You’d be surprised how you can squeeze out a little savings when you are accountable for every dollar spent.
6. Create a monthly budget.
7. Pay yourself first and start a savings and/or investment program. Even small amounts add up if you save regularly.
8. Pay off debt—especially credit card debt that comes with high interest rates. Keep your credit rating healthy and don’t forget to pay your bills on time.
9. Subscribe to our Here’s the Plan newsletter to receive financial planning tips and tools delivered straight to your inbox.