Financial Resources for a Successful New Year’s Resolution

Financial Planning | InspireHer: Plancorp Women’s Initiative

 Ranie Verby By: Ranie Verby
Financial Resources for a Successful New Year’s Resolution

It’s like clockwork—the calendar changes, the new year is before us, and we start making plans. Setting goals. Determining areas of our lives that could use improvement.   

Eating healthier or getting in shape are always popular choices for new year’s resolutions, but right behind them are financial goals—paying off credit card debt, setting savings goals, or generally improving our financial health and well-being.  

Regardless of what exactly your financial goal is, it can be difficult to know where to start. In fact, about 80% of resolutions fail. While some say their goals were unrealistic, many cite lack of resources and accountability as the culprit.   

While a financial advisor is the best tool you can have for accomplishing financial goals, a great deal of financial literacy can be gained on your own, using our helpful (and free!) resources. 

In this article, we've organized our top 3 resources that you can utilize right away to drive accountability in the new year and set yourself up for success when it comes to your financial new year’s resolutions.  

1. Evaluate and Update Your Savings Plan with the Cash Flow Worksheet 

When was the last time you took a solid look at your monthly cash flow? Have you evaluated how much you’re saving—in an emergency fund or for big purchases, as well as into retirement accounts?   

It’s easy to overlook these things when so much is competing for our attention in our day-to-day lives. While the “set it and forget it” mentality can work in some areas (i.e. automated bill pay is a game-changer), it can also be to our detriment when we apply it to our savings.  

The start of the year is a great time to revisit the percentage of your paycheck going into your retirement savings. Perhaps you can afford a larger contribution due to raises, promotions, and other changes to your monthly cash flow and living expenses.    

The same goes for the health of your emergency fund or other savings account. Whether for emergencies or big purchases, how much of your monthly income is being tucked away for a rainy day—if any?  

If your savings account isn’t growing regularly, you may find it helpful to set up automatic transfers so savings remains a priority line item in your budget. If this sounds like it might work for you, be sure to read our article on reverse budgeting, which focuses on saving. 

A great resource to use as you start evaluating and updating your savings plan is our free Cash Flow Worksheet.  

It only takes a few minutes to complete and can be a big eye-opener when it comes to spending habits. You may be shocked at just how much you’re spending on subscriptions!  

The worksheet will help you review your monthly income and living expenses, determine areas for improvement, and give you a great picture of what could be possible for you when it comes to savings. 

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2. Calculate Your Net Worth 

The term “net worth” is thrown around a lot in the personal finance world, but it’s often misunderstood.  

Maybe you’ve seen articles about a celebrity’s net worth and found yourself wondering - is that really a believable number? Chances Net worth isn’t based off your earning potential or the future value of things you own, nor is it simply how much is in your bank account today.  

Rather, it’s a simple formula: what you own minus what you owe. Nothing more, nothing less. 

Seeing your total net worth can be a real eye-opener for your financial plan, and it’s an easy place to start to gain a better understanding of your financial well-being. 

Knowing your net worth is helpful when it comes to making smart decisions and staying in control of your financial life. Whether you are looking to make a large purchase in the new year or would just like to know where you stand, evaluating your net worth is a good place to start.   

Use our Net Worth Worksheet to get a realistic picture of your assets and liabilities. Armed with this information, you might have a better idea of opportunities for improvement.   

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3. Take Our Financial Analysis 

A question we hear a lot from folks when they're considering hiring a wealth manager is "How can I be sure I'm not making mistakes I don't even know about that could cost me or my family?"   

If you've considered this as well, you're not alone. We developed a free financial analysis tool to help you get started. The analysis will walk you through some simple questions about where you are now and where you want to be.  

The analysis will consider things like your phase in life, your current savings plan—both for emergency funds and retirement accounts—and the types of financial goals you’re hoping to accomplish. 

Invest two minutes of your time, and we'll deliver your results, along with curated resources and recommendations to get you on track and feeling confident about your financial life in 2024.  

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Next Steps for Financial New Year’s Resolutions 

Perhaps your financial goals have outgrown basic advice and resources. We’re here to help. Schedule a 15-minute discovery call today to see if partnering with a wealth manager may be the next best step to meet your financial new year’s resolutions as well as your long-term goals.   

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Ranie is a native of Marion, Illinois and still considers herself a small-town girl. She moved to St. Louis in 2002 for an internship and returned immediately after completing graduate school and her CPA exam in 2003. Ranie joins Plancorp with over 17 years of experience in the accounting and finance industries. Ranie is a deep relationship builder and has a passion for building community through relationships. More »