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4 Ways to End 2021 Financially Strong

We all know holidays are busy, and the last thing you want to think about is money stuff. I get it. I’d much rather be shopping for ugly Christmas sweaters and eating way too many holiday treats. But trust me – taking care of these four things today will make the end of 2021 and the beginning of 2022 much less stressful. 

  1. Review your 2021 budgeting and savings goals, and be brutally honest with yourself about how you did. If you overspent, ask yourself why you made the decisions you did, and create a plan to stop something similar from happening next year. If your savings have barely inched up since last December, figure out where that money went instead, and make a plan to redirect it into savings in the next 12 months. I know many of you have suffered financially due to Covid and other factors outside of your control. I feel for you. Don’t beat yourself up, but do take a look at how you responded to those events and think about how you can get back on track. Of course, let us know how we can help.
  2. Find bills and payments to automate. Even your electric and gas bills can be set to autodraft, taking one more thing off your financial plate. Automating also decreases the likelihood of late payments, and gets around that pesky human tendency to procrastinate – especially during the Christmas shopping season when everyone is trying to get you to part with your money. Do be sure to check that those payments are actually autodrafted correctly, especially in the first few months. 
  3. Make gifts to charity. Many organizations are in need this time of year, whether that’s donations of warm clothes and food or volunteering your time. Make your dropoffs, get your receipts and feel good about your altruistic actions. You’ll also be able to take advantage of the tax deductions if you’re itemizing.
  4. Which brings me to my last point: I know you’re busy, but try to find an hour in the next few weeks as perhaps work is a little slower to start gathering your tax documents. You’ll be your accountant’s best friend if you get things in order early, and you’ll be less likely to forget about deductions and donations if you’re planning ahead and not waiting until the last minute.

Of course, I also hope you take the time to relax and truly enjoy this holiday season, especially after the events of the last couple of years. Whether you’re spending the Christmas season with extended family & friends, or making your own traditions and memories with your significant other, make the most of the Christmas magic.

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