A new year is arriving in less than a week, and it’s time to start planning for success by setting goals. Financial goals can seem arduous to focus on, but they are some of the most important to set and rewarding to achieve.
Not sure where to start? Target those that you have direct control over on a frequent basis, week to week, and month to month. Examples could include household budget items, insurance coverages and premiums, mortgage interest rates, auto loans and personal credit card debts. By creating some measurable financial disciplines, you can really set yourself up for financial independence. Here is a quick hit list of things to think about:
- Shop home and auto insurance: Get a quote from your current carrier and another carrier. It might be best to use a broker as they have several carriers to quote at once. Get a quote with and without a package discount as many variables exist to help customize something for you. Insurance is extremely competitive, and chances are strong you’re paying too much with your current policies.
- Attack small credit cards: Do you have small balances that exist on credit cards? For instance, if you have a $350 balance on a card and you pay $50 a month on it, could you pay the balance off and apply that $50 monthly payment to a larger balanced item (credit card or car loan)?
- Use tax refund as a bonus: What are your plans for this year’s tax refund? What if you applied most or all of it to eliminate small credit debts … could you save $100 or more monthly? Or you could apply a sum to an auto loan or a mortgage debt to save on interest expenses?
- Get a new mortgage: Lowering your current rate by .5 percent could save $60 or more monthly (using $200,000 as a loan amount). Additionally, you could refinance from a 30-year term to a 15-year term. If you have younger kids, this means you could have your home paid off around the time they leave for college. Another great benefit to refinancing is that you get 30 to 60 days without a mortgage payment. You could use that extra money to eliminate or pay down monthly debts.
Keeping personal finance goals specific and measurable increases the likelihood of achieving them. The goals mentioned above are especially rewarding because these types of expenses recur monthly, so there isn’t such a long waiting period for the “ta-da” moment. Any combination could save you hundreds of dollars every single month. Staying disciplined is challenging, especially when we have so many choices as consumers of what to do with our money. Working with someone to create strategies will help you maintain discipline achieve your goals.
Happy New Year from Fountain Mortgage. We look forward to serving you and helping you achieve your goals in 2017. Call Mike at 913.745.7000, email at email@example.com or visit online at www.fountainmortgage.com.
This weekly Sponsored Column is written by Mike Miles of Fountain Mortgage. Located in Prairie Village, Fountain Mortgage is dedicated to educating, and thus empowering, clients to make the best financial decision possible for their situation. Contact Fountain today.
Mike Miles NMLS ID: 265927; Fountain Mortgage NMLS: 1138268