7 Great Tips to Improve Your Finances in 2017

The New Year is right around the corner. Besides losing weight and getting in shape, getting control of finances is another top resolution many of us will pledge as 2017 opens. Like the latter resolutions, improving your financial situation can be challenging. But if you are willing to work to make things better, you can end next year in a better financial situation than you started it. Here are seven surefire tips to improve your finances over the next twelve months.

Set Attainable Goals

As you take stock of your finances at the end of 2016, visualize what you want them to look like at the end of next year. Set clear objectives in terms of savings, paying off debt, and investments. Write these goals down, and keep them somewhere so you can review them daily; some people use detailed worksheets to keep track of their goals, but as long as you’ve recorded them in some manner you will be fine.  Make sure these goals are achievable. If, for example, you plan to pay off a particular debt, ensure you map out, month by month, how you intend to spend in order to do so.

ice-hockey-1084197_640

Develop a Budget

One of the best ways to improve your finances is to keep track of them in a budget. Capture all of your expenses, debt, and income in a single document, and track them all month by month. There are numerous apps that can help you do this, and downloadable spreadsheets for applications like Microsoft Excel that do most of the work for you as well.  Of course, of you want to go low–tech, you can simply write them out on a ledger or a piece of paper. Tracking your finances will help you achieve the goals you have set for the year, as you will be more aware of the money you have (and don’t have). They can also help you identify some of the bad habits you might have in regards to your finances, and provide you a clear incentive to improve them.

Track Your Spending

A great way to improve your financial situation is to track your spending more closely. Record how much you spend every single day; look at the balance in your primary checking daily, and make tracking both of these things a habit. Reconcile your checking account at the top of each month in 2017, and compare your spending from one month to the next.  As you pay more attention to your spending, it is likely you will begin to spend your money a little more wisely month by month.

Pay off that Debt!

If you have significant debt, especially high interest credit card debt, paying that off, or at least down, should be a major priority in 2017. Paying off debt is one of the best ways to improve your financial fitness. Debt, on its own, costs you money every single month in interest expenses that could otherwise be dedicated to savings and investments. High levels of debt can affect your credit rating, and make it hard for you to get a mortgage, or even endanger your employment status. Finally, paying off your debt can give you peace of mind that is difficult to obtain in any other way.

Generate More Income

Beyond paying off those credit cards, a second critical thing you can do to improve your financial situation next year is make more money. And these days, making a little more money is easier than ever. Millions of people have a side gig of some sort; you could drive for Uber in your spare time, for instance, or spend the weekends ghostwriting articles for clients on Upwork. You could also work to earn some passive income, or money earned from no direct activity, as well. For example, you could rent out a room in your home or apartment occasionally on airbnb. Finally, you could try to work more hours in your current job, or drum up the courage to ask your boss for a raise.

Pinch those Pennies

As you prepare for 2017, think of ways that you can decrease your spending and save more money. Determine how to be more frugal, and you’ll have more money to pay down that debt, and make finds available for other things, like savings and investments. Try to spend less on food; buy in bulk at the warehouse stores whenever possible, and use coupons. In fact, take advantage of savings and discounts on everything you buy. You should also learn to shop around.  Compare costs on items before you buy them; there are great apps that can help you do this with ease.  Use a bicycle to get back and forth as often as possible, and cut your gas expenditures; driving less may help you decrease your auto insurance costs as well.

Get Organized

If you live more deliberately, you will more than likely save money in the long run. Making a weekly meal plan, for instance, can lead you to having a more meticulous grocery list, decrease wasteful or superfluous spending on food, and save you money every time you go to the supermarket. Planning for your next big purchase – whether it is a new computer, car, or home, can help keep you focused, and assist you in avoiding impulsive purchases that take you wildly off track of your annual goals and your daily budget.  Scheduling everything – from your meals, to your groceries, when you pay your bills, and what month you’re going to make a major purchase – can help you keep your spending in control over the next twelve months.

2017 will be upon us before you know it. Now is the time to start preparing to get control of your finances, and end up in a better position this time next year. Make realistic goals, set a budget, pay attention to your spending, and keep paying down your debt. You should try harder to be frugal and more organized in 2017 to save money, too. If you do all of these things, next year will be a great one for your bottom line.

Save More Money in 2018

Coins 1523383 1920

Subscribe and join the worldwide 52-week money challenge! Get the tools you need right to your inbox.

We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time. Powered by ConvertKit

Share this post:

Recent Posts

Leave a Comment

*

Valentine's Day gifts that won't destroy your budget

Valentine’s Day Crafts Are Romantic Rescue from Crazy Inflation

Fall for the hype this week and you’re out an average of $143.56 for Valentine’s Day. Crafts and other do-it-yourself tactics... more →

Ultimate Guide to Bitcoin — FREE Ebook!

Have we got something for you: a free ebook about bitcoin! more →
Get a flu vaccine.

Why You Need To Get a Flu Vaccine Right Now

Flu vaccines aren’t just for the elderly  anymore. Here are 25 reasons you should go get vaccinated. more →
Financially successful

Acquire the Trait All Financially Successful People Have

Financially successful people tend to all have a lot of self-discipline. Improving your discipline in one area of your life often spills... more →

What’s the Best Free Recipe App?

The Apple Store and Google Play together offer more digital cookbooks than you probably have room for on your mobile device. So which... more →
New tax law might slow down housing market.

What Will the New Tax Law Do to the Housing Market?

The new tax law will have a profound impact on the housing market, although in ways that go beyond the deductibility of mortgage interest... more →

4 in 5 Households Will Get a Tax Cut in 2018

Four out of five U.S. households will get a tax cut as a result of the legislation that President Donald Trump signed into law today. more →
Will bitcoin reach $100,000?

When Will Bitcoin Reach $100,000?

Bitcoin has accelerated its pace of appreciation in recent months, and if the current levels between $15,000 and $19,000 make you itch... more →
The Dow Jones topped 24,000 -- now what?

The Dow Jones Crossed the 24,000 Threshold. Now What?

Stocks appear to be increasing in volatility, yet the markets closed on Monday, December 4 with the Dow Jones Industrial Average is... more →
Peer mortgage

Should You Get a Peer-to-Peer Mortgage?

If you can’t get approved for a home loan from a bank, you might want to look into applying for a peer-to-peer mortgage. more →
Investment gifting is awesome.

4 Things To Know Before You Donate an Investment

While donations of any kind are appreciated, gifting investments benefits both the giver and the receiver. Here are four key things... more →
Are you wondering: What's the Relationship Between the Stock Market and Federal Debt?

What’s the Relationship Between the Stock Market and Federal Debt?

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if gains in the stock market could actually reduce U.S. government indebtedness? If that were true,... more →
National Fiscal Policies

5 Facts To Illustrate The Roles of Government Bodies That Determine National Fiscal Policies

In a presidential election year, there is a lot of chatter about the roles of government bodies that determine national fiscal policies.... more →