Updated: Jun 18, 2019
Whether you’re a recent graduate entering the workforce, a mid-career individual looking forward to retirement or a retiree enjoying a hard-earned retirement, you should periodically assess your financial picture. Below is a checklist that can be used for any stage of life to help you make sure your finances are in good shape.
Create a Budget
This sounds like a very basic notion but it’s critically important to understand your income flow and learn not to spend more than you earn. That’s how you’ll start to build your wealth.
Pay Down Credit Card Debt
Monitor your credit card expenses. If you have more than one credit card, then get rid of all your credit cards except for one card. Credit card loan debt will be three to five times higher in interest than student loans, so the goal is to focus on paying down your credit card debt as quickly as you can. Try to pay more than the minimum each month.
Review 401k and IRA Accounts
If you are employed, then take advantage of your employer’s 401(k), 403(b) or similar retirement account that offers a matching contribution. For instance, if you need to contribute 4 percent of your salary to get that match, be sure to do so. It's free money from your employer. If you can afford it, also begin contributing to a Roth IRA. It’s a good to touch bases with a plan administrator at least once a year to make changes or adjustments to your contributions.
Designate Beneficiaries on Your Financial Accounts