FLM 2017: How to End 2017 on a Financial High Note: Debt ReliefNov 07, 2017
Remember those debt relief goals you set in January? Have you taken time to revisit them and keep yourself motivated throughout the year?
It’s easy to let life get in the way, especially at this time of year as life gets busier and the holidays approach. Now is actually the perfect time to take stock of your finances — so you can prepare for these last two months and end the year on a high note.
Tune out the noise, tune into your budget
Halloween candy in August, festive decorations in September…the stores do a great job of making you feel a sense of panic and a need to shop early so you don’t miss out. Instead, filter out the FOMO and think long term:
- Has my income changed over the last few months?
- Have I taken on new debts over the summer/fall months?
- How can I prepare for upcoming holiday spending?
- Have I been ignoring my budget?
Update your budget to reflect any new circumstances such as a change in income, increased debt due to interest rates, and an increase in your mortgage payments.
Or create a new budget using this free budget spreadsheet from personal finance writer Jessica Moorhouse.
Set goals and stick to them
Sit down and make a plan for upcoming spending. Think of all the variables around the holidays: entertaining, outfits, travel, gifts, decorations. How will you afford these expenses? Now is the time to work on debt reduction and have a strategy in place so you can avoid adding to debt. Here are a few ways to start:
- Start setting aside money for upcoming events
- Pay down existing debt
- Stick to a cash-only diet
- Use apps to keep your debt management and spending accountable
Try this online debt calculator from NerdWallet to help you rein in your spending or whittle down your expenses.
Improve your financial literacy
November is Financial Literacy Month which means Canadians across the country will also be taking stock of their finances. Visit the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) website to learn more about important topics like budgeting and debt relief and take steps to improve your family’s financial health.
Have you decided to get motivated about debt relief and end the year on a high note? Check out Christine Drummond’s blog on her website The Wallet Diet for more money-saving tips.