Financing Planning Tips for the New Year
Plan to spend the New Year in Greenville, TN toasting champagne and watching the ball drop? Those are excellent plans. But it’s also a good idea to spend some time thinking about your 2022 financial planning resolutions around the New Year too.
A new year is a great time to assess what you have and plan for the future. You may even be considering hiring a financial advisor in Greeneville. Here are some top financial planning ideas and tips for the New Year.
1. Assess your goals
A solid financial plan doesn’t begin with a checkbook: it begins with knowing your goals. A comprehensive financial plan can set up a road map so you can reach your dreams, whether that’s more travel, developing hobbies more, seeing grandchildren, or starting a business.
Review your 2021 goals. Are they still solid and relevant? If not, what are your new goals? Were some achieved last year? If so, you need to think about new goals as well. Have your goals changed and morphed as life happened? How?
2. Review and rebalance your portfolios
The new year is prime time to review and rebalance your investment and retirement portfolios. In years where the stock market has done well overall, the stock portion of your asset allocation may have grown to be a bigger percentage than is optimal. Retirees and pre-retirees likely need stocks for appreciation of capital, but it’s also prudent to make sure you have other investments that can add stability and preservation of capital too, such as bonds and cash.
Discuss your asset allocation in light of your goal review with a financial planner. Does the allocation need to be changed or updated in any way (other than rebalancing)? If so, this is an ideal time to do it.
3. Review your retirement plans
If you’re not yet retired, do you have a solid retirement plan? A retirement plan includes a working budget for your retirement years, both income and expenses.
You can forecast expenses by using your current budget. (If you don’t currently work with a budget, it’s a good idea to consult with a financial planner to create one.) First, assess the categories. Some may vanish in retirement (like commuting to work costs, if you don’t plan to work). But many categories will remain the same. For these, assess how your costs are likely to change. Will they rise, decrease or stay roughly the same? Finally, think about any new categories, such as those involved in new retirement pursuits.
Then, forecast your income. Pre-retirees should assess their current retirement savings and how much they can withdraw per year.
Think about when you will take Social Security benefits if you’re eligible for them. If you don’t currently get a Statement of Benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA), it’s a good idea to get one, as it will give you a projection of how much you can receive each month.
The age at which you take Social Security makes a big difference in the amount. Although you can begin at 62, your benefits will be reduced permanently up to 30 percent if you take benefits before your Full Retirement Age (FRA). (For people born in 1960 and after, FRA is 67.) In addition, your benefits may rise each year if you delay benefits after FRA. The annual increase will occur until you hit 70, after which the SSA doesn’t increase it anymore.
If you’re already retired, it’s actually a good idea to review your expenses and income annually as well. Do you need to make any adjustments to expenses or income? If you’d like to trim expenses, you can consider moving to a lower cost-of-living area or downsizing your living arrangements. If you need to raise your income, you can consider working or adjusting your retirement savings.
4. Review your retirement savings
A new year is a great time to review your retirement savings. Once you review your retirement plan, you should have a good idea of whether you need to save more, keep your contributions at the current level or even cut back.
If you want to save more for retirement going forward, consider your options. If you are in a 401(k) or similar retirement plan with a company match, review whether you are taking full advantage of the match. If your company will match your savings at 50 percent or 100 percent, you’re leaving money on the table if you don’t take it.
Then, review the amount of your contribution. Allowable limits on 401(k) plans are rising in 2022, to $20,500 from $19,500. In addition, if you’re 50 and over, you can contribute $6,500 more per year.
If you don’t have access to a 401(k) or similar plan, Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are also excellent retirement vehicles.
5. Update your insurance needs
Risk management is also part of a comprehensive financial plan. Don’t neglect a review and update of your insurance needs at the end of the year. Are all your assets insured, for example, including those you may have purchased during the year? If you had life insurance, do you still need it? (You may not if your one-time dependents, such as grown children, are no longer depending on you financially.)
Look at your health insurance needs. Do you participate in a Flexible Savings Account (FSA) or Health Savings Plan (HSA) if you’re eligible, to reduce your taxable income? Is your current health insurance adequate for your family? If you’re 65 or approaching it, do you want to take Medicare? (You don’t have to be retired or drawing Social Security benefits to be on Medicare; you only have to be 65 and eligible.)
6. See a financial planner
For all these needs, it’s prudent to see a comprehensive financial planner. The financial professionals at Sapiat Asset Management can review your goals and all your financial needs to make 2022 a very good year.
At Sapiat Asset Management, we use a personalized process to identify the financial and retirement planning strategies that meet the needs of our clients. Our knowledge of your financial situation is a big part of the foundation that drives our relationship with you. Contact us today for a complimentary consultation.