Helpful New Year Finance Money Tips
As the holiday season continues and the remaining days of the year dwindle away, many people consider what they can do over the next year to improve their financial situation in 2022. Besides any New Years' resolutions, the continued economic uncertainty caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic makes it even more important to start 2022 on the right financial track. Here are some helpful money tips to consider in 2022 to harden your financial stature.
Be Mindful about Trading Apps
Though most people see lots of commercials and advertisements promoting stock trading apps as a quick and easy way to gain wealth, you should be careful not to put too much money in high-risk investments such as these. On a small scale, investing through new financial applications can be a good way to make money, but it is a high risk to put all of your eggs in that basket. To mitigate some of the risks of investing in the market for the future, be sure to keep a sizable emergency fund contained within an FDIC-insured bank to weather any catastrophic downturns, such as the one that occurred at the beginning of 2020.
Be Smart about Cybersecurity
Cyberattacks are now a fact of life as so many facets of the economy are digital. Financial institutions are no different. However, cybercriminals can also possibly get their hands on personal accounts if there is a vulnerability. First, the most important thing to do with your online financial accounts is to set up biometric and two-factor authentication to log into your apps and websites. This way, a cybercriminal will have a much more difficult time getting into your private financial accounts unless they somehow gain access to all of your devices. Furthermore, be sure to keep track of all transactions made on your account and enable and monitor automated bank alerts in case there is any fraud. Banks and credit card companies are easily able to reverse fraudulent charges on your accounts, but only if the owner keeps a close eye and alerts the institution.
Look for a Raise
Pandemic-driven inflation is sparking higher prices across the board for most living expenses. If you feel that you need more money to keep up and your hard work is worth more, do not hesitate to ask your company for a pay raise. Not all managers are receptive to these kinds of requests, but there is plenty of guidance on how to have these conversations with employers. Many companies are on track for record wage increases in 2022 due to the crunched economic situation, so if you can get your hands on one, your financial situation can be greatly improved, as the current period of heightened inflation is projected to last well into next year.
Plan for Retirement
Depending on your picture of retirement savings, you may be able to plan for an earlier retirement than the standard age of Social Security. Everyone knows that saving for retirement from a young age throughout your career is important, but along the way, you should monitor your savings situation to project an age where you can end your career. Most people have aspirations to have enough money to retire young, so if you are one of them, you should assess your situation to set an age number as a goal for retirement.
Save More for Emergencies
On top of your retirement accounts, maintaining an emergency fund has been proven to be an extremely important financial skill to weather crises like financial meltdowns and pandemics. At the beginning of the pandemic, the economy ground to a halt due to lockdowns and business shutdowns, so many people needed to dig into their emergency funds to weather the severe recession. The pandemic continues today with new variants causing surge after surge, and the economy continues to be in a state of limbo. Thus, building up an emergency fund to weather future surges and economic crashes is important to survive financially.
Inflation continues to be a crisis that is impacting most American families. However, cutting unnecessary spending is a way to blunt the impact of rising costs. Restaurants have been continually raising prices to cover increased costs of labor and ingredients, but food prices in grocery stores have not risen as fast. Eating out less has a double benefit of reducing COVID-19 exposure and stress on your wallet. Moreover, since gas prices have become so volatile throughout the pandemic, so using more public transportation is a good way to save money on getting around.