It’s the New Year and time to take care of a few important financial matters. CAIM LLC offers some simple steps to help you review any loose ends from the year past, as well as plan ahead for 2011.
1. Get rid of the clutter and get organized
January is a prime time to go through all those year-end statements, old bills and financial records lying around. Toss those that do not matter and file those that do. Refer to CAIM’s January 29, 2010 newsletter for details on what to keep and what you can throw out. Remember, most financial records should be kept for a significant amount of time. On the other hand, unnecessary paperwork can only lead to clutter and fiscal confusion.
Simplify your life by:
* Setting up three files for all your important documents. These will be labeled Wills & Trusts, Investments and Insurance (health, life.)
* Go paperless. Most people do not send hard copies anymore so it’s a good idea to organize your email in-box into individualized folders for all your correspondence i.e. Charles Schwab, CAIM LLC etc.
* Keep a separate and secure list of your passwords and login info.
2. Yearly budget for big purchases
Just as every business should have a business plan, each individual should also have a financial plan for the upcoming year. Whether it’s saving for holidays or home improvements, investing in retirement or making major purchases, a financial plan will help you budget without having to use a credit card and/or go into debt.
3. Set up a meeting with Financial Advisor to review investments
The key to a successful relationship with your financial advisor is effective communication. Set up a meeting with him or her as soon as possible to review your goals and confirm that your current investments are still right for you.
If you don’t have an advisor, are you sure you’re maximizing your investment potential?
4. Check your debt
Do you know how much you owe? What interest rate are you paying? The New Year is a perfect time to begin consolidating your debt. And the best way to get rid of it is to see if you can negotiate lower rates and then start paying more than the minimum. Your goal is to eventually get rid of credit card debt altogether.
5. Review your mortgage
Over the past year mortgage rates have come down dramatically. When was the last time you reviewed your mortgage? Now might be the right time to see if you qualify for a lower rate and lower your payments. Lowering your interest rates can save you lots of money over the life of your mortgage.
Copyright 2011, CAIM LLC
Disclaimer: NO CONTENT PUBLISHED AS PART OF THE CAIM LLC NEWSLETTER CONSTITUTES A RECOMMENDATION THAT ANY PARTICULAR INVESTMENT, SECURITY, PORTFOLIO OF SECURITIES, TRANSACTION OR INVESTMENT STRATEGY IS SUITABLE FOR ANY SPECIFIC PERSON. TO THE EXTENT ANY OF THE CONTENT PUBLISHED AS PART OF THE BLOG MAY BE DEEMED TO BE INVESTMENT ADVICE, SUCH INFORMATION IS IMPERSONAL AND MAY NOT NECESSARILY MEET THE OBJECTIVES OR NEEDS OF ANY SPECIFIC INDIVIDUAL OR ACCOUNT, OR BE SUITABLE ADVICE FOR ANY PARTICULAR READER. EACH READER AGREES AND ACKNOWLEDGES THAT ANY SPECIFIC ADVICE OR INVESTMENT DISCUSSED IN THE BLOG MUST BE INDEPENDENTLY EVALUATED BY THE READER AND HIS OR HER ADVISER IN VIEW OF THE READER’S INVESTMENT NEEDS AND OBJECTIVES.