I thought this was a great article from Tim McLaughlin, VP Weichert Financial Services in regards to getting your finances in order for 2010.
‘Taking a page out of a book from a mentor that I respect dearly, here are some easy goals and timetables to get financial fit in the first half of 2010:
New Year’s Day: Save more. “Saving more” is the top goal on people’s resolution list this year, according to a recent survey commissioned by Putnam Investments, which found that respondents put thriftiness ahead of those two perennials “losing weight” and “exercising more.” Be it increasing your 401K, saving pennies, or shopping smarter and /or less, it seems like a goal on everyone’s 2010 list.
Presidents Day: Prepare for new credit-card rules. In late February, the second phase of the Credit Card Act will kick in. To be well prepared, look at your February credit card bills to memorize your due dates, which, by law, will be the same each month. Paying your bills on time is the most important factor in your creditworthiness, and now should be even easier to accomplish. Also take a look at your interest rate: If it’s variable, it will climb when interest rates go up…and they will. Finally, expect new billing statements by summer with far more information, including how much interest you have paid year-to-date.
Memorial Day: Get your annual credit report. To start the summer right, take advantage of the once a year freebie and check your credit report for accuracy and to help avoid identity theft. The credit bureaus will also try to sell you a credit score and may offer a discount. If you want an idea of what your score is, buy the FICO score, developed by Fair Isaac Corp.
January 8th: Capitalize Big! This one is probably the most important. Capitalize on opportunity! Want a lower mortgage rate and payment? Refinance your mortgage if you haven’t before rates go up. Want to take advantage of the housing tax credit before it goes away, and capitalize on low rates and affordable housing? Do it now while the opportunity is hot. And who will help? As always, your Weichert Gold Services Manager and your knowledgeable Weichert Realtor. Lets capitalize on 2010…we can help!!!’