Year End Financial To-Do List

Year End Financial To-Do List
Eileen St. Pierre, The Everyday Financial Planner

Let’s get our finances in order before the year ends. Here’s a financial to-do list:

  1. Establish a holiday budget. Determine the total amount you can afford to spend on gifts.  List everyone on your gift list with a price range next to each person.
  2. Track your holiday bills. If you use your credit cards a bit too freely, transfer the amount of your budget into a savings account – just withdraw the cash when you go shopping.
  3. Keep a little extra savings on hand. Unexpected expenses always crop up during the holidays so it’s good to have a financial cushion.
  4. Update your W-4 if you’ve had any changes in your family during the year. This form tells your employer how much money to deduct from your paycheck for income taxes.
  5. Use the remaining money in your FSA for eligible health care expenses or lose it at the end of the year. Your company may offer a grace period up to 2½ months to use the money or allow carryovers up to $500 next year.
  6. Pay yourself first. You can contribute up to $18,000 to your 401(k) by 12/31/17. You have until 4/17/18 to contribute up to $5,500 to a Traditional or Roth IRA. Those who are age 50 and older can make additional catch-up contributions.
  7. Make your charitable contributions, especially if you itemize on Schedule A.


Vist my Basic Financial Management page for more tips.