As we close out another year, you may have already given your resolutions for success and happiness some thought. Many of us aim to create a better version of ourselves. We want to become healthier, spend more time with the people we love, advance our careers—all important goals—but, what about becoming more financially confident? That kind of flexibility and freedom balanced with a sense of stability would be huge for you and your family.
Often times we think of financial planning and management as a daunting task. Maybe you don’t know where to start at all. I’m here to tell you, the first steps toward planning your future are much simpler than you think (and significantly easier than that 6 a.m. gym class you signed up for).
Discuss and Set your Financial Goals.
This is the time to step back and think about your core goals for you and your family. It’s important to have this discussion with your spouse or partner. Discuss your priorities—needs, wants, and wishes—and outline any changes for the year, such as saving for your child’s college education, buying a new home or charitable giving.
From there you can call or schedule an appointment to solidify those goals. For you, a financial check-up is really just a conversation. We’ll ask questions to get aligned on your goals, evaluate your progress, explain your options and outline next steps. Putting your goals in writing is the first step to financial confidence, and our goal is for you to walk away feeling reassured and empowered.
Here are some areas our team of trusted advisors will discuss with you:
1. Planning for Retirement
Even if you’re in your 20s, it’s never too early to start planning and saving. This is another area people tend to over-complicate. We can help you see the big picture and break it down into easy, actionable steps that will set you up for long-term success. You can even use our online calculator to get a head start on evaluating your retirement needs.
2. Minimizing Risk
People of all financial levels need to minimize risk, and many people miss this critical step. It’s not just about how much you save. There are unforeseen circumstances, whether they be health-related or a home or auto emergency, that can throw you off in a big way if you aren’t protected. Someone may not high-five you for completing an insurance review, but we assure you, it’s a step you don’t want to overlook and will be thankful for in the long-run.
3. Ensuring your Estate Plan
If your first response to creating or updating your will or medical directive is, “Oh, I need to do that,” you’re not alone. We understand and hear that often. If you have a fairly simple estate, take advantage of the many easy-to-use resources online and take the essential steps to ensure that your wishes are carried out and your family is taken care of. To ensure greater confidence, those with a more complicated estate and/ or family members, it would be wise to speak with a Trust and Estate Attorney.
4. Reducing Debt
This one certainly calls for celebration! Every milestone moment toward eliminating debt is a victory. Setting goals to figure out the best way to fast-track your payoff will get you well on your way to attaining more financial freedom.
Reviewed on August 1, 2022
Written by: Dave Johnston, head of wealth management
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. Financial products made available or recommended by Ameris Bank that are not bank deposits are not insured by the FDIC; are not a deposit or other obligation of, or guaranteed by, Ameris Bank; and are subject to investment risks, including possible loss of the principal amount invested.