financial advice

How to do a Semi-Annual Financial Check-In

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When a new year begins, it’s very easy to get excited about resolutions and goals. While this may be good for your finances at first, eventually life can and will get in the way. That’s why it’s always a good idea to do a 6-month check in with any of your goals, be they financial or otherwise.

Today, we’ll help guide you through your semi-annual financial check-in to make sure you’re still on track, or to get you back on track.

Gather up all your accounts and statements

First, you’ll want to make sure you have all your ducks in a row by getting all your financial account statements. This includes your bank statements, credit card statements, investment statements, any debts or loan repayments you’re doing, real estate/mortgage, and anything else you can think of that falls into this category. You could also include your credit score statements, but just be careful you aren’t checking these scores too often in one year, as this can affect your score.

Having all the documents laid out will make sure that, when you evaluate them, you aren’t forgetting anything. Make a check-list if you want to be extra-organized!

Re-evaluate your goals

A lot of the time, people will feel as though they are trapped in their goals and have to see them through before making a new one. This doesn’t have to be the case! Sometimes our values or expectations change, which means that our goals will also change. Don’t be afraid to admit if your goal doesn’t align with your beliefs or lifestyle anymore, and change it accordingly.

If your goal is still relevant to you, however, take a look at what steps you’ve accomplished so far, and take time to congratulate yourself. Even if you aren’t quite where you want to be yet, acknowledging that you’ve made progress at all is a great way to keep yourself motivated.

Write down your action plan for the next six months

It’s one thing to think about what your next steps are going to be - it’s another thing entirely to write them down. According to a study at the Dominican University of California, you’re at least 42% more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down and revisit them consistently.

By taking your plan and writing it down step-by-step, you’ll set a clear path for yourself to make sure you will reach your financial goals, and you will also be able to know when you complete certain steps!

Do a quick check-in every month to stay on track

When it comes to my finances, I check my statements every single day to make sure I haven’t missed anything and that I’m on the right track. You don’t have to be as crazy as I am, but make sure you check in with your progress at the very least once a month. Once a week may be even better! That way, you can figure out immediately what has worked, what hasn’t, and change your plan accordingly.

Goals, especially financial ones, can be daunting if you don’t have a path or you’re unsure what to do. Follow these steps, however, and you’re much more likely to be successful!

What are some of your financial goals for the next six months? Have any of your goals changed from January? Let us know in the comments!

How to Increase Your Financial Literacy This Month

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April is Financial Literacy Month! Now that we’re done with Q1, this is a great time to check in with your finances, set goals for yourself for the next quarter (and the rest of the year), and improve your knowledge about finances!

Here are three different ways to increase your financial literacy this month:

Read, read, read!

Physical books, blog posts, news articles - just keep on reading! Here at Milborn, we have a curated feed of news articles and blog posts all about personal finance, so we can stay on top of the latest reads! You can start your own free curated feed at Feedly.

Don’t want to stare at a screen all day? Make this your excuse to head to your favorite book store! Some good ones to start with include The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey; Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki; and Broke Millennial by Erin Lowry (her new book, Broke Millennial Takes on Investing, comes out April 9th!).

Arm Yourself With the Right Tools

Are you doing anything outside of checking your statements? Do you even check your statements? Now’s the time to start.

If your bank has a mobile app, download it. If you aren’t tracking a budget, start (If you don’t want to do it yourself, apps like Mint can make it so much easier)! If you want to get into investing, research investing sites or apps (Robinhood or Acorns are great ones to try if you find investing a bit intimidating).

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Create a Team

This one is so important - make sure you have a good support system, and check in with them if you haven’t yet. This includes making sure you have a strong and capable financial advisor. At Milborn Advisors, we are your guide, as well as your allies - we make sure to give you the best possible advice for your current situation, without any hidden fees or tactics. You’re as much on our team as we are on yours, and we want to see you succeed.

Want to take us for a test-drive first? Contact us today for your free first consultation.

Are you trying anything else to increase you financial literacy this month? Comment your tips below!