You probably associate cleaning up, weeding out, and starting fresh with springtime, but when it comes to your finances, Jan. 1 may be just as good a time to adopt some savvy new habits. Stay tuned for my resolution worksheet to help you track all your financial goals for 2010, but for now, here are a few resolutions you can accomplish right this second to start your new year off on the right foot.
- Cancel unused subscriptions and memberships: You know that magazine that keeps coming every month and ends up in the recycle bin unread? Or that monthly wine shipment you keep meaning to discontinue because it’s just a little too pricey? Now’s the time, savvy gals. Heat up a cup of hot cider to keep you company, and spend 20 or 30 minutes making those calls you put off for all of 2009 — and start the new year with a few extra bucks in your bank account.
For two more immediately attainable resolutions, read on!
- Get your budget back on track: Between buying gifts, going out for celebratory dinners, and traveling, chances are your budget has gone out the window over the holidays. Take an hour or two to sort through receipts and rework your budget, at least for the month of January. And if you don’t already use an online money manager like Mint, this might be a good time to set it up.
- Come up with a plan for paying off holiday purchases: If you used credit cards for a good portion of your holiday spending, decide right now how you’re going to go about paying them off. Cut back on dinners out for the next couple months, allocate more of your paycheck toward credit card payments — do whatever you need to do to make sure you’re not still paying off your holiday purchases when next Christmas rolls around!