Tuesday, November 20, 2018

10 Financial Planning Items to Be Grateful For

On Thanksgiving, it is customary to express gratitude for good things that have happened in our lives. Often, this includes our family, friends, and shared memories, but it can also include positive events that have happened with our jobs and personal finances. Below are ten items to be grateful for on Thanksgiving. Best wishes for a wonderful holiday weekend.

  • Positive Cash Flow- Consider yourself blessed if your income exceeds your expenses, including savings for future financial goals. Over one-fifth of Americans are not able to pay their monthly bills in full.
  • Increased Savings- Having more money saved this year than last year is a very positive step forward.
  • Decreased Debt- Having less debt to repay than last year is also a very positive step forward.
  • A Good Credit Score- A credit score of 740+ will get you the best (lowest) interest rates on loans and credit cards. Only 45% of credit users fall within the ranges of 740 to 799 (25%) and 800 to 850 (20%).
  • An Adequate Emergency Fund- Having at least 3 months of expenses set aside in savings provides peace of mind when “stuff happens” in life. Almost half (45%) of Americans do not have even 3 months of expenses saved.
  • Adequate Insurance- Large losses like disability, liability, property damage, and a life-threatening illness are a lot less costly when there is a third party available to help pay some of these expenses.
  • Good Health- Virgil once said “The Greatest Wealth is Health.” Paying attention to diet, sleep, and physical activity and having a good physical health status can help reduce costly out-of-pocket medical expenses.
  • A Good Job- Jobs/careers provide an ongoing source of income and employee benefits such as health insurance plans and 401(k) plan matching. Even better, recent news reports indicated that many workers received a raise in 2018.
  • Free Money and Savings- Let’s be grateful for cash-back rewards credit cards, 401(k) plan matching, promo codes on social media, door busters, and other shopping savings opportunities.
  • New Consumer-Friendly Laws and Policies- An example is free credit freezes nationwide.  Another is new Medicare cards without Social Security numbers to reduce the risk of identity theft fraud.

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