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Organize Finances for New Year

Review all your statements

Make sure you set time aside monthly to review all your bills and statements. This is a good time to look for things you are paying for but no longer need or especially for things that you can cut back on. A good online app that can help discover interest increases or add-on charges or even auto-renewing subscriptions is Truebill.

Check out your credit union’s online money management tools

Credit unions offer online tools to help with your financial management. How can I save for that hot sports car, that dream home or those toys for the boys? How much down payment do I need to save for that shack at the shore? What type of investment is the best for me? Play with their calculators to make your financial decisions easier. And if you want to set up a budget and track your spending take a look at their FREE personal financial management software which can aggregate all of your financial relationships and help you set goals.

Financial calculators will help you understand APRs, APYs, amortizations, and the power of money. Just go on your credit union website and select a category that peeks your interest:

Always prepare for the unexpected

As we all know, life can throw you some curveballs. Life’s challenges like the loss of a job, or medical issues can leave you drowning in a sea of debt. As I’m sure you have heard before, it’s essential to build an emergency fund that can cover three to six months of expenses. Even if you can save only a little each month, you can grow a financial protective cushion.

Cut loose of debt

Are you that person that makes just the minimum payments on your credit cards or other major debts? Did you know this means you’re paying mostly interest and barely even shaving away at current balances? One effective method for reducing debt is to concentrate on your highest-interest balances first, while still making timely smaller payments on all other commitments. When you have your high interest debt paid off, concentrate on the most expensive remaining balance, and continue this way till you’re debt free.

When your financial obligations are truly out of control, combining your debts into a single payment may provide the relief you need. Streamlining multiple debts into one single lower monthly payment can help you pay off your bills sooner. Your options include home equity, personal loans and zero-interest credit card balance transfers.