Executing your personal finance strategy takes more than a New Year’s resolution; it takes discipline, education about budgeting and a mid-year financial review. Taking a peek at your financial strategy can motivate you to keep working towards your personal finance goals, as well as highlight areas that may need some improvement, but do you know where to start? Discover how to perform a mid-year financial review to ensure you are on track financially.
Review Your Credit Report
The first step in a mid-year financial review is to check your credit report to assess how your personal finance strategy has affected your credit score. Obtain a copy of your credit report and scan your credit history for accuracy. Next, make a list of items that should have fallen from your credit report, such as negative payment information, bankruptcies, foreclosures, judgments and liens. It is also a good opportunity to check for inaccurate information that may be a sign of identity theft.
Take a good look at where your credit accounts stand. Are you paying your balances on time? Are you chipping away at your debt? Assessing your outstanding debt and payment history will help you gauge whether or not your personal finance strategy is working for you.
Evaluate Your Budget
Sticking to a budget is the most effective way to meet your financial goals, but it can be easier said than done. A mid-year financial review will help you determine whether you are saving enough for your goals and paying off debt sufficiently. In addition, life changes such as a loss of a job or the addition of a new family pet can throw your budget for a loop, so examine your personal finance goals and reorganize your budget to adjust for these changes.
Verify Your Funds
Even when budgeting for bills, putting a little bit aside each month for savings or emergencies can lessen the financial burden when special expenses arise. Measure your funds and adjust your budget mid-year to ensure your personal finances will be ready when the need arises.
Even if you don’t already have a budget or personal finance plan in place, a mid-year financial review can help you discover where your credit report and finances stand, and help you target your financial goals. So, set aside a few minutes to double-check your progress and stress less about your finances year-round!