Americans Set Resolutions to Fix This Year’s Financial Blunders
The month of December marks a time of reflection and planning. Families look back on the last 11 months and determine what areas they wish to improve during the upcoming year.
A new study from Principal Financial Group shows Americans are hoping to change their financial strategies in 2019. Approximately 22% of respondents said they did not save enough in 2018, and 11% said they did not budget properly.
Others said they regretted taking on more debt (10%), spending above their means (9%), and accruing a larger balance on their credit card accounts (9%). In terms of how respondents mismanaged their money, 29% said they spent too much dining out, followed closely with grocery purchases at 27%.
In the coming year, nearly half of Americans are aiming to save more each month (46%). Survey participants also said they want to reduce their monthly spending (38%) and pay off credit card debt (29%).
If you are aiming to save money or pay off debt in 2019, here are some tips to keep in mind:
- Prioritize your debts based on what will provide the most financial stability. Repay them in a way works for you: smallest to largest, highest interest to lowest interest, or highest monthly payments to lowest monthly payments.
- Once you have paid off that debt, save the same amount of money each month that you were using to pay off debts. If you are no longer making $500 credit card payments each month, put that $500 into savings.
- Set a realistic monthly budget and stick to it. Allot for dining out, groceries, and other expenses, but do not fall prey to last-minute temptations. Those add up quickly.
- Look through your bank and credit card records from the past year. Find out where you overspent, and set goals to prevent those mistakes next year.
- Act on your New Year’s resolutions right now. Don’t wait until January 1 to put yourself in a better financial situation.