2016 Financial Resolutions

Life GoalsEvery year we make plans to start the New Year with a clean slate, or with new goals. Maybe you want to shed a few pounds, start a new course, or open a business; but have you ever thought about your long-term goals maybe a new car, house, a dream vacation, retirement. Planning for the future starts now and the New Year is a great time to overhaul your financial life for the better. One excellent place to start is by making sound resolutions that can help to get you closer to your financial goals.

Financial Resolution 1: Know What You Want

Have clear, concise financial goals for the year.

Unrealistic Goal – “I want to pay off my credit card and have more money in the bank”.

Instead, say, “I will keep the balance on my credit card down to $0 after every month, and ensure I have over $5,000 in my savings account.”

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Are you too young to plan for your retirement?

Many persons who are under 40 years old have not yet begun planning for retirement. However, is there such a thing as “too young to plan for retirement?” Does “the early bird catch the worm? The earlier you start to plan for retirement the more prepared and at ease you will ultimately be. Here are some helpful tips to help you grow your financial wealth and ensure that your retirement years will be well cushioned. Continue reading

Investing For Life Stages Pt1

If you’ve been asking yourself what mix of investments is right for you at this stage of your life, read on. In this series we will highlight the different life stages from teenage years to retirement and offer tips on how to invest for each stage.

Deciding on the right asset mix  is an important part of investing and planning for your future.

You asset mix should:

  • Help you balance risk with your expected rate of return on your investment
  • Fit your comfort level for risk
  • Enable you to get your money when you need it
  • Help you get the growth you need to reach your goals
  • Change as your needs and goals change over time

Should my stage in life change the way I invest?

Your age and life situation should play a big role in your choices for investment. If you are thinking about getting married, you might be considering money to buy a home. If you’re in your 40’s, you may be saving for retirement or you children’s education.

Early Working Years

If you’re starting to work for the first time, you may not have a lot of savings. However you have time on your side. Many people at this stage are risk takers when making long -term investments since they believe that even if things go wring they have time to recover.

Middle Years

Your Salary may be much better than in your early years but you may also have a lot more responsibilities, including:

  • Children to support or help through school
  • Saving for retirement
  • Debt in the form of mortgages, loans or credit cards.

In that case, you may want to shift your investments toward less risky options.

Retirement Years

Older investors usually change their portfolio to safer investments. They want to protect their savings because they’ll need to live on those investments after they retire. They may also prefer investments that offer a steady, reliable stream of income that they can access whenever they need.

In our next post, we’ll take a more in-depth look at investing for life stages, starting with the teenage years. Stay tuned!

13 Questions You Should Ask Before You Invest

Your first step as an investor is deciding what you’d like to achieve.

What are your financial goals?  Do you want to make a down payment on a house in two years?  Will you need to help pay for your children’s education in ten years? If you’re employed, you may also need to plan for your retirement.

Here are some questions to help you decide your investment goals, and ultimately, your investment strategy.

1. How much money do you have to invest now?

2. Will your employment income allow you to invest additional money in the future? How much? Are you confident that will continue?

3. What are your monthly financial obligations and how much do those obligations change from month to month or year to year?

4. Do you have other valuable assets that will play a role in your financial future?

5. Do you have any outstanding debts that you’d like to pay off?

6. Do you plan to make any major purchases in the future?

7. Do you need money from your investments each month to supplement your regular income? If so how much?

8. Do you have dependents to care for, and will their needs be changing over time?

9. What are your life and property insurance requirements?

10. Are there income tax considerations that are particularly important to you?

11. Are you a participant in a registered pension plan?

12. Do you expect to inherit money at any point in the near future?

13. How much money would you like to have readily accessible in case of emergency?

These questions are a good place to start to help you have a clear understanding of your financial situation and thereby help to clarify your investment goals.  The idea is to pool all incomes then subtract all obligations and then, depending on the disposable income left , decide whether you want to save or invest.