Bright Days, and Bright Ideas to Keep Your Finances on Track

summer beach family sun fun financial update planning retirement savings home value pets taxes travel college children estate planning

It’s summertime! Thoughts of warm sun on your face may be top of mind – but a financial check-in might not be.

While a financial check-in may sound less relaxing than a day at the beach, assessing your current situation proactively and recalibrating as needed with the help of your advisor will keep you on top of your game.

Here are a few simple questions to identify small tweaks to your financial plan that could pay dividends.

Can you increase your retirement savings? Most annual raises occur between January and April. If you received an increase, consider allocating some to your HSA, 401(k) or IRA. Your future self will thank you.

Has your home’s value increased? Housing prices are predicted to rise another 10% on average this year, so revisit your homeowner’s insurance to determine if you have enough coverage. Some premiums have risen to account for inflation, so consider shopping your policy for the best price too.

Have you adopted a new pet this year? If you’ve added furry friends to your household, think about adding them to your estate plans. While we consider them family, some states consider them property. Adding a pet clause to your will makes certain your wishes will be honored. 

How are you trending with taxes? It’s best to check in midyear to see how your income is trending so you can estimate what marginal tax bracket you’ll land in. It will help you determine if you should put off income that could push you into a higher tax bracket until the following year.

Do you have the travel bug? You’re just deplaning from your summer vacation, but there’s no better time to consider holiday travel than now. Set price alerts for date ranges and destinations you’re considering for holiday travel, so you can book confidently when the time comes.

Are your children headed to college? If your children are off to college soon, help them create a budget and discuss financial expectations, particularly around use of credit. It builds a foundation for financial literacy and opens lines of communication for future conversations .

Have you updated your passwords? If you’ve ignored that nagging pop-up far too long, it’s time to change passwords for your financial accounts. Be sure to update your estate planning documents with that new information.