Covering the Land of Lincoln

Top financial to-dos to end the year strong and prepare for 2023

BPT

The holidays are a time full of good cheer, but not necessarily so jolly for your bank account. ‘Tis the season to stress out your budget, not to mention the anxiety many people have about the increasing cost of living and the ongoing economic uncertainty.

According to the Q4 2022 Country Financial Security Index Report, 1 in 4 Americans are looking for help with navigating today’s economic volatility. So how can you set yourself up for financial success now and into the future, especially considering so many unknowns?

Fortunately, there are some important steps everyone can take to help them have a jolly holiday season and a financially healthy 2023. You can end the year financially stronger with these helpful tips from Scott Jensen at COUNTRY Financial:

Check your financial pulse

The close of the calendar year is a worthwhile time to pause and reassess where you’re at in your financial journey. There are lots of reasons to stop, take your financial pulse and figure out if there’s a course needed correction before the year comes to a close. Some time-sensitive questions to ask yourself include:

• What is an appropriate budget to set for the holidays?

• Is there money in your flexible spending account that needs to be used?

• Do you have medical needs that must take place before a new deductible period starts?

Look for gaps

It’s important to make sure you’re protected from the curveballs life can throw, like a large unexpected expense. Now is a good time to check on your insurance coverages to see if there are any gaps.

First, review your insurance products such as home, auto and life. If you had significant life changes such as a marriage, new baby, divorce, made improvements to your home or are planning a major purchase such as a vehicle or property, schedule a meeting with your insurance agent to make sure you’re covered now and to help you plan for future insurance needs.

Don’t forget to look for gaps in your financial goals, too. A financial professional can learn about your goals and help you make adjustments so you’re on the right track.

Enlist the help of a financial professional

If you don’t already have one, consider how a financial professional can help you keep a clear vision with a solid plan for the new year. According to the COUNTRY Financial Security Index:

• Only 23% of Americans have a financial advisor, yet those who do feel better about their finances, including higher levels of financial security (80% compared to 53% among those who do not have a planner).

• People with a financial planner have more confidence in their ability to pay their debts (96% compared to 76% among those who do not have a planner).

• Those who have a financial planner are more likely to set aside money for savings or investments (71% compared to 51% of those who do not have a planner).

Don’t wait to change the course of your financial future. Now is the ideal time to assess where you are, change where you’ve strayed and make corrections for a bright 2023 and beyond.

COUNTRY Financial is the marketing name for the COUNTRY Financial family of affiliated companies (collectively, COUNTRY), which include COUNTRY Life Insurance Company, COUNTRY Mutual Insurance Company, and their respective subsidiaries, located in Bloomington, Illinois.

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