The New Year allows for a fresh start. Many of us celebrate this new beginning by making a New Year’s resolution. I, like most people, make a New Year’s resolution and make a promise to myself to follow through with it indefinitely. However, oftentimes my motivation and desire fizzles out within a couple of weeks and I never look back. Whether your resolution is to exercise more, eat healthier, save money, or quit smoking, we all know how hard it is to stay motivated and follow through with our resolution. Sometimes in order for you to succeed in making a change you need someone or something to hold you accountable.
Financial resolutions can be some of the most complicated and stressful resolutions to make. Whether you resolve to free yourself from debt, buy a new car, save money or spend less, everyone can use a helping hand to accomplish financial goals. One of the most useful tools you can use in creating financial stability is a Personal Finance Manager such as Mariner360. Mariner360 links all of your accounts at all of your financial institutions so you only have to make one stop in order to manage all of your finances. This PFM is a great resource to help hold you accountable and visually see the progress of your goals and budgets.
Mariner360 is simple to use, easily accessible, and free for Online Banking customers. It automatically categorizes your spending which allows you to visually see how much you spend dining out, on a car loan, on your utilities, in gas, etc. each month. With Mariner360, you can also see your monthly cash flow, set up a budget, or set a goal.
So how exactly might you use Mariner360 to help with your financial resolutions? Let’s look at a couple of examples:
Resolution #1: I want to buy a new car by the end of 2013.
If you’re looking to purchase a new car, you have some options. What make and model are you looking for? New or used? What kind of monthly payment you are willing to take on?
Mariner360 can help you narrow down your options to help you set a realistic goal. Let’s say that after doing some research, you decide that you would like $10,000 saved by the end of the year.
Under the “Goals” tab of Mariner360, you can type in your goal and Mariner360 will let you know how much you need to save each month in order to meet your goal:
According to Mariner360, if you had about $1,500 saved already, you would need to save $701 each month in order to meet your goal. Then you can ask yourself if this seems like something that you can realistically do. If not, figure out how much you feel you are able to put away each month, then think about lowering the down payment or delaying your purchase by a few months.
Resolution #2: I want to limit the amount of money I spend dining out.
This is always a popular New Year’s resolution since it kills two birds with one stone – it helps you eat healthier while spending less money. A great way to stick with this resolution is to set up a budget in Mariner360. Simply navigate to the “Budgets” tab, plug in the amount of money you would like to limit yourself to each month and you’re good to go!
You can check back throughout the month to see how you're doing. So, if a friend wants to meet you for lunch, check and see if you have enough left in your budget before agreeing.
If your New Year’s resolution is finance related, do yourself a favor and use the services of a Personal Financial Manager like Mariner360. Make it as easy and effortless as possible to follow through and stick with your goals. Your bank accounts will thank you.
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