Wealth Management Tips for 2012

The New Year is always a fantastic time to make resolutions, but it doesn’t usually take too long to break them.  Many people began 2012 with some ideas about how to improve their finances over the course of this year, but some of them – like you – may need additional hints to help you make sure that you’re sticking to your financial resolution.  Here are a few suggestions how:

Receipts.  The number one suggestion about whipping yourself into financial shape is to keep those receipts!  It’s often tempting to delete them, throw them away, or to not collect them at all.  However, as tax time draws near, you’ll make it easier on yourself or the person preparing your 1040A tax form if you keep them and organize them as well.  Let part of your financial resolution be an organizational one as well.  And that means keeping these resolutions past tax time … and for the rest of the year!

Insurance and important documents.  Review your property and casualty insurance with your insurance agent or company to make sure that everything is as it should be.  Look over your auto insurance as well, making certain that liability limits are appropriate.  While you’re at it, review and revise any important estate documents, including your will and power of attorney.

Planning and budgeting.  Developing a spending plan or a budget allows you to keep track of your finances, including the cash you drop on what can be seemingly unimportant expenditures at the time.  Remember:  those little things add up quickly!  Part of this planning should involve reducing consumption of unnecessary goods.  The theory is that we often buy what we don’t really require, so when making your plan, see what you can cut out of your budget as you go along.  If you are a small business owner, be choosy when it comes to selecting a merchant processor to help you process your customers’ credit cards:  you don’t want to invest in a high risk merchant account.  Even though the next holiday season is a year away, if you begin planning in advance, you’ll help ensure your financial security by keeping track of all your expenditures and planning for those in the future.

Diversify.  Don’t allocate too much money to a single stock.  Avoid the temptation to invest all your money in your employer’s stocks, as sinking too much into a single company could leave you open to concentration risk.  You stand to see smoother returns if you diversify your portfolio.  Your portfolio may also need to be rebalanced by adjusting places so as to align your portfolio with your financial goals.

Retirement plan contributions.  The limit for elective contributions to your 401(k) plan has gone up five hundred dollars from last year if you are under the age of fifty.  If you increase your contributions to your retirement plan to the maximum amount (or as much as you can do successfully for the moment), your forward thinking will help to ensure that your future self will be more comfortable financially.

One Response to Wealth Management Tips for 2012

  1. Willie Nelson says:

    Anything that makes paying your taxes easier is gold in my book. Trust me, the IRS is nothing to sneeze at.

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