Sam Sayed, VP, Private Banking
As we begin to thaw out from winter, many of us have already begun the process of spring cleaning. But, that mental and physical refresh doesn’t have to be limited to our homes. Tidying up your bank account can be just as important.
Here are five of Waterford Bank’s top tips for “spring cleaning” your finances.
Check In On Your Financial Goals
If you set goals for yourself at the start of the year, now is a good time to revisit them. Are you staying on track? Do they still align with your current life goals or situation?
The best way to bring your financial goals to life is to make a plan and start on it!
And, if you haven’t set any financial objectives, now is a good time to start. Consider a plan to pay down debt or build your savings. If you need to, start small– and don’t forget to celebrate milestones along the way!
Review Your Budget
Your budget is what lays the foundation for financial health. It’s what directs your money toward necessary expenses and helps you save for the big things in life.
Look at your bank statements and analyze your spending. Are you staying within your limits, or are you overspending in certain areas? Consider what you may be able to cut back on and identify your priorities.
Spring Cleaning is Easier When You Automate Your Savings
Saving money can be challenging, but what if you could do it automatically?
There are a few different ways to set up automatic savings. What’s best for you will depend on your goals and current financial situation.
You can save for a rainy day in a number of different ways – but the easiest way to save is to automate the process.
The first option, is to instruct your employer to split your direct deposit into two or more bank accounts, with one being your savings. Just contact your payroll or HR department to set it up, letting them know how much you would like to save from each paycheck. They will let you know what steps you need to take based on your company’s systems and infrastructure.
Another way to save, is by working directly with your bank to automatically transfer money into your savings account. Get in touch with your bank and advise how much and how often you want funds automatically transferred into your savings from another account you own. At Waterford Bank, N.A., you can do this on your own, utilizing our online banking tools to set up recurring payments.
If you have any questions, call our Customer Care Line at 855-896-2064.
Cancel Unused Subscriptions as Part of Your Financial Spring Cleaning
When it comes to monthly payments, you’re probably spending more than you think. To separate the necessary from the frivolous, start by listing every monthly or annual subscription you pay for: streaming, music, box subscriptions, landlines, software, etc.
Once your list is complete, go down the line and ask yourself: “Do I use this multiple times per week?” and “Does this product or service make my life better?”
If you started paying for a streaming service, for instance, because of one TV show, do you really need it anymore? Are you only paying to skip the ads? If you aren’t using the app regularly, or if there is a cheaper option, you might consider cutting back.
Check Your Credit Report
Did you know that every 12 months you can request a free credit report from each of the three major consumer reporting companies? If you’ve never done it, now’s a great time to take a look.
Keeping an eye on your credit score is an important step of maintaining healthy finances. A credit report provides a good overall picture and can be ordered from any of the three major consumer reporting companies.
Once you have your report, carefully review it and correct any errors. Mistakes to keep your eyes out for include identity and contact information, account status, data management errors, and incorrect balance information.
If you spot something wrong on your report, contact the credit reporting company who sent it to you, as well as the creditor that provided them that information in the first place.
It’s a good idea to get in the habit of investigating your credit reports regularly. Set an alarm to remind you each year – and if you request each report separately, you can spread out this process and keep a closer eye on your credit throughout the year.
No matter where you’re at in your financial journey, our team is here to help you move forward with confidence. Learn more about the resources we have to offer.
About the Author
Sam Sayed is a Vice President of Private Banking at Waterford Bank, N.A. in Toledo, Ohio. Throughout his career Sam has provided detailed financial guidance to a vast array of individuals on their personal finances. Sam’s clients include small business owners, corporate executives, attorneys, engineers, healthcare professionals, and beyond. If you’d like to contact Sam to discuss Private Banking services or another aspect of your financial journey, please contact us here.