Financial resolutions for the New Year

If you read my post about SMART goals, you know that I believe goals are great things to have if thought out well. We still have a few days left in the year to think about healthy habits we want to carry over or start in 2012. Aside from your goals on food and fitness, have you thought about making resolutions for your financial health? Personal financial health is of high importance in addition to physical fitness for those who want to have a more secure future. Whether you want to pay off a large amount of debt or just want create your first budget sheet to keep track of expenses, you need to start somewhere.

Our financial goals for 2012:
1. Pay off the rest of student loans
2. Complete our 6 month emergency fund
3. Increase our retirement fund to 15% of our gross income
4. Save $4,500 for a new (to us) car.
5. Save up 50% of a down payment on a house

Need some ideas for where to start?

- Download Dave Ramsey’s budget sheet and categorize your spending
- Create an account at Mint.com to set up budgets and keep track of your money
- Put back a percentage of your paycheck into savings. If you’re already doing this, can you increase that percentage this year? You can usually set this up automatically with your bank.
- Cut costs. Are you eating out too much? Splurging on clothes too often? Do you need that coffee every morning?
- Analyze your credit score and find out how to increase it
- Contribute to your retirement savings (get rid of debt and jump on this one!)

What are your financial resolutions for 2012?