3 little-known New Year’s resolutions that can do wonders for your finances – The Motley Fool

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All of these could yield great results.


Most important points

  • It is customary at the start of a new year to make a promise to cut back and save more.
  • These financial moves can also go a long way.
  • Keeping track of your credit card balances and credit reports, and investing even a small amount each month are smart moves for your finances in 2023.

We are approaching the point of the year where many people are committed to New Year’s resolutions. And some of them may be financial in nature.

Now you often hear people say things like, “I’m going to spend less money this year” or “I’m finally going to pay my money off.” credit cards forever.” And stimulating your Savings is a popular New Year’s resolution to strive for. But as you build your list of commitments, it pays to consider adding these less common but important financial tasks.

1. Check your credit card balances every week

Some people don’t glance at their credit card balance until their actual bills are due. And by that time, they have already incurred so many expenses that they cannot pay them off in full.

That’s why you should commit to checking your credit card balances weekly in 2023. If you see them starting to rise, it may prompt you to spend the rest of the month more cautiously to avoid going into debt or extra on existing debt.

2. Check your credit report quarterly

Your credit report is something you probably don’t think about too often. But it is an important document to read.

Your credit report gives you a snapshot of your borrowing history and tells you how you present yourself as a borrower. It lists your outstanding loans and open credit card accounts and shows you how fast you are paying bills and how much of your available credit you are using.

Checking your credit report once a quarter not only gives you an idea of ​​how you’re doing financially in terms of managing and paying loans and obligations, but it can also alert you to fraud you’ve fallen victim to. If you see an outstanding bill on your credit report that you don’t recognize, you know to investigate.

Credit reports will be free weekly in 2023. But checking yours weekly may be overkill. A quarterly checkup is generally sufficient, but if you’re following up on a specific issue, you may want to check every few weeks.

3. Invest $50 per month

Investing thousands of dollars every month may not be feasible for you right now. So start small. Commit to investing $50 each month either in one IRA account or taxable brokerage account, if you’re just starting out, then do your best to ramp it up over time. The sooner you start investing money, the faster you can grow it to a larger amount.

If you are not sure how to start investing, one option is to just buy exchange traded fundsor ETFs. This effectively allows you to buy a whole range of different stocks at once instead of having to choose companies on an individual basis. That may fall into your comfort zone better if you learn how to vet a stock first.

You may have a number of different New Year’s resolutions on your radar for 2023. But while these three may not have been on your list to begin with, it definitely pays to give them a spot.

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