Plan to Save in 2013? Basics to Get Started

 It’s the start of a new year and we all have the best intentions. But it can be easy to let those intentions slip away by the end of January if you don’t have a plan.  

In my previous post, I addressed strategies for developing an action plan to keep your financial savings resolutions.  For even more ideas, Susan Tompor of the Detroit Free Press offers more than a dozen basic savings ideas in her recent article “13 Resolutions to Save in ’13.” All the ideas are helpful, but here is my Cliff Notes version of the top three simple strategies you can put to work:

  1. Use What You’ve Got – How many of us run out and buy something new rather than take the time to look for and use what we might already have?  We tend to stash items in the pantry or in the back of the closet and then forget about it.  So, before you run out to the store to get something like a new tube of toothpaste, why not make sure you’ve used up the small tubes you’ve collected from your dental visits over the past year first?
  2. Think “Just In Time” --  Our society is obsessed with stores like Costco and Sam’s Club that allow us to get tremendous “deals” by buying in bulk.  Unfortunately, this leads to overspending and overstocking our pantries with items that we then forget we have (see #1).
  3. Go to Your Kids and Ask Them How to Save Money – Get the entire family involved in saving.  It’s never too early to get children involved in being fiscally responsible, and you might be surprised at the creative ideas that they come up with.

Making progress towards your larger financial goals starts with just a few small steps.  Start your steppin’ today.

Sandra Adams, CFP® is a Financial Planner at Center for Financial Planning, Inc. Sandy specializes in Elder Care Financial Planning and is a frequent speaker on related topics. In 2012 and 2013, Sandy was named to the Five Star Wealth Managers list in Detroit Hour magazine. In addition to her frequent contributions to Money Centered, she is regularly quoted in national media publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Research Magazine and Journal of Financial Planning.

Five Star Award is based on advisor being credentialed as an investment advisory representative (IAR), a FINRA registered representative, a CPA or a licensed attorney, including education and professional designations, actively employed in the industry for five years, favorable regulatory and complaint history review, fulfillment of firm review based on internal firm standards, accepting new clients, one- and five-year client retention rates, non-institutional discretionary and/or non-discretionary client assets administered, number of client households served.