5 Financial Resolutions for 2021 and How to Keep Them
January 12, 2021 by Hunter Swanson
According to a new WalletHub survey, roughly 97 million Americans plan to make a New Year’s resolution for 2021. The top spot? Save more. But keeping our resolutions throughout the year can be difficult. That’s why we’ve created a list of five financial resolutions for 2021 and how to keep them.
5 Financial Resolutions for 2021
- Make a realistic budget and stick to it
- Focusing on your physical health affects your financial health
- Repay 20% of your credit card debt
- Add one month’s pay to your emergency fund
- Pay bills right after getting your paycheck
How to Keep Them
1. Make a Realistic Budget and Stick to It
How much do you want to save each month? To reach that goal, gather your bills from the past few months and make a list of all your recurring expenses. Rank them in order of importance, with necessities such as housing, food, and healthcare at the top. After that, you can cut from the bottom of your list until your hit your goal. Check each month to make sure you’re staying on track.
2. Focusing on Your Physical Health Affects Your Financial Health
Think of it as two resolutions in one: getting healthy physically helps you get healthy financially. According to the American Psychological Association, money and the economy are our biggest sources of stress. A healthy diet and regular exercise can help alleviate some of that stress. People who get regular exercise tend to have better credit scores, spend less on health care each year, and make wiser financial decisions.
3. Repay 20% of Your Credit Card Debt
Did you know the average household owes roughly $7,900 in credit card debt? 20% of that would amount to about $1,570, requiring monthly payments of $131 over the course of the year. Whatever your total, if you can go higher and stay on budget, go for it. If you’re making the minimum payment and 20% is a little beyond your means, try to at least double your minimum payments. The sooner you can reach credit card debt freedom, the happier your wallet will be.
4. Add One Month’s Pay to Your Emergency Fund
As many of us have learned lately, it’s important to have an emergency fund. Most of us should have 6-12 months of take home pay stashed away. But this doesn’t happen overnight. Start working on it now and see how quickly you can save one month’s pay. This will help give you an idea of how long it will take to reach that 6-12 month goal.
5. Pay Bills Right After Receiving Your Paycheck
Taking care of monthly obligations first is a helpful budgeting strategy. It gives you a better sense of what you can afford and what you can’t. It also can improve your credit score by reducing the balance listen on your monthly statement.
In the end, remember why you made the financial resolutions. Maintaining that drive is what helps us succeed most of all. If you would like more help with your financial goals, we recommend checking out our post S.M.A.R.T. Financial Goals. Let’s make 2021 a successful year!