Getting Ready for a Fresh Start

Despite the potential long-term benefits of reviewing personal finances on an annual basis, it seems that many Americans still don’t make it a priority to do so.

Have you already taken steps to give yourself a fresh financial start next year? It’s still not too late to begin.

Aim Higher for Retirement

Today, workers are eligible to contribute more money than ever to their employer-sponsored retirement plans. For most workers, the maximum annual pre-tax contribution is $18,000 in 2015. If you’re at least 50 years old, you may also make additional contributions — known as catch-up contributions — of up to $6,000. That amounts to a $24,000 overall contribution limit this year.

Search for Savings

Even if you can’t contribute the maximum, a reality for many given life’s various financial challenges, seek out opportunities to set aside more money for retirement whenever possible.

Consider creating a comprehensive household budget that allows you to plan and track spending on an ongoing basis and includes among your listed expenses a commitment to “pay yourself” in the form of retirement savings. More than likely you’ll find some “fat” in your budget, even just a little, that can be trimmed to free up savings dollars.

Defeat Debt

The U.S. savings rate recently hit its lowest level in almost half a century, due in part to higher rates of borrowing and credit card debt. If debt is getting in the way of your long-term goals, consider strategies for chipping away at it:

  • Transferring high-interest debt to a credit card with a lower rate.
  • Trying to pay at least twice the minimum required payment.
  • Using a tax-refund to pay off outstanding loans.

For more ideas on how to get a fresh start, talk to your financial advisor.

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This article was written for information purposes only and its content should not be construed by any consumer and/or prospective client as rebel Financial’s solicitation to affect, or attempt to affect transactions in securities, or the rendering of personalized investment advice for compensation. No client or prospective client should assume that any such discussion serves as the receipt of, or a substitute for, personalized advice from rebel Financial, or from any other investment professional. See our disclosures page for more information.


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