6 Financial Tips for the End of the Year

year end financial tips2012 definitely seemed like it flew by quickly. Hopefully it did not seem to escape you as quickly as it seemed to escape me. With the end of the year quickly approaching, there are many personal finance money moves that you might want to do or try in order to fully maximize the year. This is so that you can plan more realistically for 2013, and to also see how you truly did in the year of 2012.

There are probably hundreds of other things on your to-do list in December, but your financial well-being is also very important. Wrapping up your year by reviewing how you did financially can be beneficial and also refreshing to see how you did.

We like to do many of these things at the end of the year so that we start out well in 2013. We also forget about many things until the very end of the year, so a list is always good to help remind yourself.

 

1. Review Your Goals

Did you make goals in the beginning or during 2012? Take a look at them and see how you did. What’s the point of making goals if you haven’t looked at them at all? See what you need to work on and what you can change. Maybe you wanted to increase your retirement savings and do more charitable giving, do this before 2012 is over! You can fully maximize on tax credits and hopefully maximize the amount of your employer’s retirement match if they offer this.

Also, set new financial goals for the new year. For me, goals give me something to work towards, and I am just that much more motivated to be successful with them.  If you found yourself failing, maybe you’re setting too many goals?

 

2. Review Your Budget

Do you make a monthly budget? Maybe even a yearly budget? See how you did, and you will most likely want to tweek or create a new monthly/yearly budget altogether as well.

With the fiscal cliff and the endless amount of other things happening in our economy and in politics, families should also be thinking about how tax changes will affect their new budget as well. You will most likely see a slight difference in your take home pay, so this should be thought about.

 

3. Analyze Your Investments and Portfolios

When was the last time you actually analyzed how good (or bad) your investments were doing? You might need to rebalance your portfolios and update them.

Also, if you are nearing retirement, it might be good to think about shifting into less or more risky (depending on how much you’ve saved and where you are it towards your goal) so that you can save enough for your retirement. Maybe even consider automating everything buy using one of these great free online money management tools.

 

4. Check Your Credit Score

If you don’t check your credit score often, then the end of 2012 might be a good time to check it. You can then kind of guide where you financial goals should be going, if you deem your credit score as necessary for the things you might need (such as a new house).

 

5. Look at Your Tax Withholding

Are you anticipating getting too much money back on your tax return in April of 2013? Maybe you anticipate that you will owe a lot of money? Either way, adjust your withholding if this happens. You could be saving or investing this extra money instead of waiting until the next year to get it.

 

6. Charitably Give to Your Favorite Organizations

Yes, giving to your favorite charity is not always about getting a return (such as on your income taxes), but it is a plus of it.  Give to your favorite organizations now (if you would like to of course) and then it will count on your tax return.

What are your 2012 end-of-year money moves?

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Comments

  1. Number 2 is one of the most important items. Reviewing your budget on a monthly basis ensures you achieve your financial goals during the year.

  2. I like that you mentioned review your credit score. That is something too many people dont pay attention to until they need their credit for something and by then it could be too late. I look at my investments every quarter but I may need to just do a quick review during the holidays.

  3. I need to review my credit score/report for sure…last time I checked there were things on there that did NOT belong to me!

  4. Great tips. I would say that #6 is the most important for me as I really feel like I should do my part with helping out charities. Helping others less fortunate is really dear to my heart.

    We are working on finalizing our investments now so we can file early in the new year.

  5. All great tips especially 1, 2, & 3. Every year we analyze our spending and our budget.

  6. Each time a new year starts, we set our goals and write them or paste a picture on our dream board. At the end of each month, we checck our goals, review each them, and make changes, if necessary. We are glad that we were able to attain 90% of our goals for the 2012. We have yet to check our credit score for this year.

  7. Very good tips. I think #3 goes a long way. I just started analyzing my portfolio and the return thereof. I may need to adjust/reshuffle a bit depending on lowest performing investments.

  8. Excellent advice. I love going over “the books” and analyzing our budget performance for the year. We keep a really tight budget at the moment and it is fun to see tightened belts making a difference.

  9. Review is the keyword for me at the end of every year. We sit down and review our goals from 2012 and our overall financial health. We are able to set our budget for the year and the direction we want to go in. Great post and tips! Mr.CBB

  10. I have done the goals review and goal setting but not much of the rest. I plan on sitting down to make sure I get the best possible deal in every area of spending and see where to cut the fat.

  11. 1 and 2 are the most important ones I feel, because they set you up to achieve great financial goals in the new year.

  12. I don’t want to check how I did with my budget because I fear the results might be disappointing. But seriously, it’s a good idea to review your budget and then make adjustments for the following year. These are great tips I should give more thought to.

  13. Thanks for the mention at Your PF Finance Pro!

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