Do you ever wonder about the not so far off future?
Well, if you’re on a first-name basis with your insurance agent and plan out your weekly lunches, your family might be 99% ready for the future!
However, if you still have your 2016 calendar on the wall…maybe not!
Let’s take a closer look on how to plan ahead and create peace of mind in a few simple steps …
Take a Deep Breath and Section out Long Term Planning…
1. College planning.
Start saving early for college. My girls are in their early elementary school years, but college will be here before we know it, and costs are always going up. Making sure you have a financial plan is essential. The earlier parents start contributing money into a 529 college savings plan, the more time the money has to grow. For example, if you start saving $200 per month in a 529 education savings plan for the next 10 years earning a 3.5 percent tax-free return, you’d accumulate almost $29,000. See it does add up!
2. 401(k) planning.
Go ahead and supercharge your 401(k)! Most people set up their 401(k) and forget about it. But, when your income increases, your savings should increase too. Studies show that increasing your contribution by 1% can have a huge impact. Plus, if your employer offers contribution matching, it’s like you’re getting free money for retirement!
3. Emergency funds planning.
You never know when an emergency will arise. Do you have enough money in your emergency fund to cover six months of spending? Most Americans don’t, so if you’re shaking your head “no”, you’re not alone. Grab a calculator, enter your monthly expenses, and multiply it by six. Take that number and write it down on a piece of paper. This is your goal – to be able to pay for six months of costs in cast of an emergency. It may seem like a big number, but you can take that big goal and break it into smaller milestones to make it more manageable.
Since we are launching into a new year, we might as well start the year off right How? By reevaluating your insurance needs. It’s crazy how much can change in only a year, so review your premiums, deductibles and beneficiaries and ensure it all still meets your needs. A great place to figure out what insurance holes exist in your financial plan and what coverage you need (and don’t need) is PolicyGenius’ Insurance Checkup. Once you know what where your insurance gaps are, you can compare rates from the nation’s top carriers and apply online. The customer service is run by a licensed group of agents who don’t work on commission, so they are on-call and on chat to answer any questions you have without the intention to sell you on a specific company or policy.
Remember to review your life insurance policy as well. Life insurance provides a financial safety net intended to protect your family and financial plan, which can include paying off debt like student loans, long-term goals like saving for college, and day-to-day needs, like income replacement and childcare costs, in the event that you die prematurely.
The biggest question that life insurance shoppers have is, “Which is better for me, term life insurance or whole life insurance?” Through PolicyGenius I learned that , without a doubt, that term life insurance is the best fit for the majority of American families. Why? Because it’s relatively affordable – 4 times less expensive than whole life insurance – and you only need to pay for it when you really need it. PolicyGenius offers a ton of advice and tips throughout the shopping process so you’re never left guessing. That’s a great fit for people like me who like to learn along the way and know I’m making the right decision for my family , now and in the future.
Now Fill in with Short-Term Planning…
1. Weekly meal planning.
While you may veer off meal ideas from time-to-time, I can’t stress enough that it is a good idea to have some notion of as to what meals you will be eating and preparing for your family at meal time throughout the week. Having it possibly plotted out either on paper or digitally can simplify meal planning this greatly. For extra help use my FREE meal planning printable…
2. Keeping up with all of your family’s extra-curricular activities daily.
This is also another one that can make life surely more crazy if you don’t have everyone’s appointments and activities schedules more written down. I use utilize my iPhone calendar, as well as a physical 2017 agenda to make sure I am not missing any events.anything for anyone.
3. Vacation planning.
At the very least, I recommend scheduling time for advise to have days allowed for a larger scale family vacation. You could also invest in a vacation club of sorts to be able to enjoy some down time–. wWe we actually belong to the DVC (Disney Vacation Club). This has made us become more accountable as far budgeting our time and money monetarily and time wisely for bigger annual family vacations.
Within families, it seems like someone is always celebrating a birthday, graduation, baby shower, or something else. Map out your budget ahead of time, so you’re not caught by any surprises.
So what are you waiting for?
Start planning ahead now.
Feel free to share how you are planning for the future in the comments…