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Money moves to make before 2015 ends

There may be less than 3 months remaining in 2015 and yet there is still time to make important financial moves that help improve your situation now and make the start of 2016 better too. Don’t wait until the last minute because these moves might have a major impact if you make them soon.
What are tax related moves that can help our situation?
There are several moves we can make even now that can have a big impact on our 2015 taxes. First, maximize 401k contributions by increasing your contributions for the last three months to reach the maximum allowed. Even if you don’t do the max, at least reach the employer match limit.
What if someone is self-employed, do they have options?
One important option is the solo 401k plan for self-employed individuals. This is a great tool to save for retirement and also reduce your tax liability for the current year. Get the plan opened before the end of the year is the key to getting a benefit for 2015.  These types of plans can be excellent choices for self-employed individuals.
Are there any other moves that have tax implications?
Making donations to charity is one option that can reduce your taxes. Plus, this time of year many charities are struggling to meet their financial needs.
 The other action to consider is a review of your investment portfolio to cash out on stock winners and offset this by selling stock losers. Your investment advisor and tax specialist will be able to help you through this tricky tax situation.
What about other financial moves to make before the end of the year?
One is to make sure to take advantage of your free credit check if you haven’t already done it. This is a great service. We should always review our credit reports annually. 
Another often forgotten financial move is to review homeowners insurance to make sure you have the best policy at the best rates. This is a great time complete the review so that you can make any changes with the renewal of your homeowners policy in early 2016.
What would you recommend for people getting ready for the holidays?
October is a great time to start preparing your holiday budget and setting a spending limit for each person and also an overall holiday spending budget that includes all the costs associated with the holidays. Starting early allows you to find the money you need to save to fund the holidays.
What are the advantages to starting early with your holiday planning?
First it allows plenty of time to research possible gift ideas and determine if your budget is realistic.  Having not only a budget but ideas on what you are actually going to buy makes it easier to find the best deals.
If you have a detailed gift plan, you are less likely to overspend on the holidays. Most holiday overspending is not caused by the fact we don’t have a budget, it is caused because we really don’t know what we want to get everyone on our list. Unplanned shopping only leads to impulse buying and impulse buying leads to big holiday debts. That is not how anyone wants to start 2016.

Posted: 10/8/2015 with 0 comments

Categories: Financial, Money Matters, Planning

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