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Financial Fresh Start: The road to financial wellness in 2024

The start of a new year often consists of fresh beginnings and resolutions. While many focus on health and personal goals, it is equally important to focus on our financial well-being. The new year gives the opportunity to assess, revamp and assess our budgets and financial strategies.

Reflect on the past year – It is important to understand what financial strategies worked well, and what could be improved. Have a look at your spending habits and set up a monthly saving plan.

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Set clear financial goals – In order to create and adhere to a successful financial plan, it is essential; to establish clear and achievable goals. Whether it’s saving for a dream holiday, creating an emergency fund, or paying off debt, it is important to set specific, measurable and time bound goals. This will make it easier to determine if you are on track to meet these smaller goals, which will help to meet the longer-term goals in the future.

Update your budget – In order to have achieve financial stability, you need to create a well-structured budget. Utilise online budgeting tools to streamline the process and gain a better understanding of your financial habits. This can help to identify areas in which you can cut back on spending.

Build and emergency fund – Once you have created your budget, aim to save three to sixth months’ worth of living expenses into a dedicated account that will be set aside as a safety net to provide peace of mind in the event of medical emergencies or job loss.

Debt management – If you have outstanding debts, consider creating a plan to manage and reduce them. Try to prioritise high-interest debts first and explore debt consolidation options if it makes sense for your situation. Tackling debt strategically will ease financial burdens and will eventually help to improve your credit score.

Invest wisely – Explore investment opportunities that align with your financial goals and risk tolerance. Diversify your portfolio to spread risk and maximize potential returns. Consider seeking advice from your financial adviser to ensure your investment strategy aligns with your long-term objectives.

Review your insurance coverage – Ensure that your insurance coverage, including health, life, and property insurance, meets your current needs. Life changes, such as marriage, childbirth, or a change in employment, may necessitate adjustments to your coverage to adequately protect you and your loved ones.

Stay informed – Stay informed about financial trends, investment strategies, and changes in the economy.

Kick starting the new year by reviewing your finances is a proactive step towards securing your financial future.

By reflecting on the past, setting clear goals, and implementing financial strategies, you will start to create a robust financial foundation.

Written by: Jemma Long

Date: 7 February 2024

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