Spring cleaning doesn’t only have to apply to getting rid of waste in your home. The warm weather time is also a great opportunity to dust off your finances after a long cold winter!
Let’s take our hypothetical vacuums, dustbusters and brooms as we evaluate your finances and organize your online banking techniques and other financial habits.
1. Evaluate Your Credit Score
This spring (and summer) is a good time as any to check out your credit score and history.
Order your credit report for free, especially if you haven’t in some time. This is important to check on every few months, to make sure you haven’t fallen victim to identify theft or credit card fraud. Any erroneous charges should be reviewed, and corrected. Any credit cards you opened but no longer use should be closed out as we check off our financial to-do list.
2. Secure Your Finances
Speaking of identity theft, it remained a prevalent issue in the recent tax season. When a thief gets a hold of your social security number, or individual taxpayer identification number, they have the ability to file a tax return to claim their fraudulent refunds.
Download a firewall or antivirus protections this spring to help amp your security. Take some time to make sure your security software is updated for the highest available technological protection. Make sure your social security card is stowed away somewhere safe, and shred any miscellaneous documents holding private information.
3. Review And Update Your Documents
As we continue to dust off any cobwebs from your finances, it's important to review some of your beneficiaries and your will. Make sure your will is up to date with your desires. Your beneficiary information, such as life insurance, trusts and 401k plans should all be reviewed as well. This is especially imperative if you have experienced a life change this past winter.
4. Go Digital This Spring
Save some paper and try going digital with your banking. Download a smartphone app to invest your money for free.
MoneyLion is one of our favorite online banks where users can create diversified portfolios across various international or domestic stocks and bonds. Whether you’re a seasoned investor, or just starting your portfolio, making a membership through MoneyLion makes investing easier than ever.
Users add as much or as little as they’d like, and the account manages itself through robo-advisors. This is a hands-free, and easy way to watch your money grow, and you have the ability to make adjustments in your investments as you see fit.
5. Review Your Budgeting Habits
Let’s review how you're budgeting your needs. Go through your spending habits, from your Comcast Corporation (NASDAQ:CMCSA) Xfinity cable bills, utility costs, and look if anything can be cut back. This is a good idea of your spending needs have recently changed, or your income has risen or fallen.
Knowing exactly where all your money is going is not only going to help you find ways to save money, but it will also give you peace of mind. Happy cleaning!
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