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You were going to get your finances in order this year. You over there, you were going to start saving. You! Over there. Yeah, grin. Weren’t you going to start an investment program this year?

You weren’t one of those planning to get rich. You just wanted to avoid getting poorer.

And suddenly — there’s less than one month left in 2021!

And you didn’t get it done! Some of you started. But it’s tough.

There’s no better time than now to start thinking about what you can do to start 2022 off on the right footing.

Here’s what you can do now to set yourself up for financial success in 2022

Change your mindset

Fear of the unknown holds many of you back from taking the first TRUE step toward financial health.

Whether it is setting up a child’s 529 savings plan, (these states offer free money to help when you do this: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Nevada, New York City, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee and West Virginia. If you live in one of these states also check into the state program as well); getting insurance or drafting your will — just get started.

If you’re a procrastinator, consciously procrastinate that you’ll do it on Friday, or next Friday, then schedule it for THIS Monday and ask them to call YOU.”

And FINANCIAL GYM’S SHANNON McLAY ON “DROPPING THE EMOTIONAL ATTACHMENT TO MONEY”

LOOK AT YOUR BUDGET

What did you spend money on this past year?

Look at your credit card statements — many lenders even break down the expenses by category for you. See where you can adjust for the following year.

If you need to bring more money in, consider taking on a side hustle, asking for a raise, or finding a new job. January and February are the best times of year to job-hunt because that is when companies’ new hiring budgets tend to go into effect.

CHECK YOUR MEDICAL EXPENSES

If you still have money left in your flexible spending account, you may want to make that doctor’s appointment you’ve been putting off or buy qualified items so that you get the reimbursement for this year.

While legislation signed into law late last year allows you to roll over any unused FSA funds into 2022, your company has to opt-in. Some employers also give a grace period of a few months into the next year or permit you to carry over $550. If you still have money in the account, check with your employer to make sure you don’t lose it.

REVIEW YOUR INVESTMENT PORTFOLIO

Don’t have one. You struggle to have a small bank savings account or just keep enough in the checking account to avoid overdrafts? Did you know that rising financially will not happen without two things? Adequate Income to meet BASICS and Investing So here’s our suggestion:

GO ON AUTOPILOT

While most of us have the best of intentions to get our financial lives on track at the beginning of the year, things begin to fall apart as the year goes on.

By setting up automatic transfers from checking to investment account, you can avoid that.

Don’t sabotage yourself by thinking you need to put in $5,000 or even $1000 to get started

Be OK with putting in $25 per month and just get it connected and going, It is easy to go in and change it from $25 to $250 then to $500 or $5000 per month later as you grow. And don’t think you don’t have time. That kind of thinking is why you aren’t “there” yet.

A lot depends not on your age, but on your income level, life situation and goals, but right now you are wrapping up 2021, making some moves that must be made by December 31st for Tax and other benefits next year but the basics outlined here should motivate you to RENEW YOUR FINANCIAL DREAMS for 2022 And remember, as Walt Disney told us, DREAMS REALLY DO COME TRUE!

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