8 Smart Money Goals for the New Year

By
Eric M.
on
December 29, 2018

Revamp your life and improve your financial stability with these 8 smart money goals for the New Year.

A new year brings new hopes of goals and change in our lives. It’s a perfect time to review our lives and identify areas where we can improve.

All of us have financial weaknesses in our lives where we can improve. There is always something we can change to increase our financial stability.

You’ve probably heard the saying by Ben Franklin that “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail”.

This is especially true with our financial plans. Plan to succeed with these great money goals for the new year:


1) Write Down Your Goals

Have you ever made an amazing goal, but then completely forgot about it because of everything going on around you?

I have. We all have. But did you know that you are actually 42% more likely to reach your goals if you just write them down?

Writing down your goals is powerful. When I want to get things done for the day, then I write my goals on a To-Do list in a little white notebook. I check off each task when I get it done.

The feeling of accomplishment I receive after completing every task on the list is a feeling of pure bliss and relief.

Write down your financial goals for this upcoming new year and put them somewhere you can see them! We put ours on our refrigerator where we are sure to see them - especially me :)


2) Save Money on Your Utilities and Monthly Bills

There are 2 ways to become more financially independent in this life - save more money or make more money.

Housing, utilities, and other monthly bills are facts of life - unless you’re lucky enough to still live with your parents.

There are lots of ways to cut down on these monthly bills which can really add up over time.

For example, are you currently living in a 2 bedroom apartment? Consider getting a roommate to save a few hundred dollars a month.

When’s the last time you paid attention to your utilities or gas bill? Have you tried anything energy saving tips like smart light bulbs or energy saving curtains?

Another huge bill that can easily add up is your Internet and cable bill. We use Netflix and Hulu instead of cable because of how much it saves. Also, if you haven’t checked your Internet bill recently take a look at it. You may be shocked at how much you’re paying.

Talk with your Internet service provider and see if you can get it lowered. After a 1 year promotion, they decided to double my internet bill!

I decided to lower my internet speed, take advantage of a promotion, and make a couple of phone calls. Now, our Internet bill is only $30/month instead of $60/month and we still get high-speed internet for all our streaming needs. That we still get to watch Cupcake Wars and Shark Tank (my personal favorite).


3) Create a Roth IRA or Increase your Contributions to It

An amazing money goal for this upcoming year is to create a Roth IRA account. A Roth IRA is a post-tax investment vehicle which is very valuable in retirement. You pay taxes on your income and then portion out a certain amount every month or year to your Roth IRA.

You can create a Roth IRA with most any investment firm. I currently have one with USAA but will be transferring it over to Vanguard in the near future. I’m a big fan of Vanguard because of their insanely low expense ratios on their index funds.

If you already have a Roth IRA, that’s fantastic! Make a goal to increase your contributions by at least 10% or better yet - max out your contributions!

As of 2019, you can contribute $6,000 to your Roth IRA which is a large chunk of change which will grow substantially for your retirement. Check out this cool Roth IRA calculator I use to find out just how much a Roth IRA can grow.


4) Increase your Income by 10% or More

In addition to saving more money to become financially independent, you should also make goals to increase your income. This allows you to reach financial independence sooner than you would have otherwise.

There are a few different ways you can increase your income.

One simple way is to simply ask for a raise. Many people don’t get a raise when you have to do is just ask! I’ve been working at my current job for a year now and figured it’s almost time for a raise. I asked my boss about it and 2 weeks later got a raise.

If you work for yourself or aren’t able to get a raise at work, then you can pick up a side hustle for some extra cash.

My favorite side hustle is to buy things locally and sell them on eBay. I go to garage sales or look on Craigslist for good deals. Then I’ll take pictures and list it on eBay to sell. You can make decent money doing this in your free time.

Check out this complete list of side hustles by J. Money.

5) Pay an Extra $100/month on Your Mortgage

Do you have a mortgage and want to save thousands of dollars by just making extra mortgage payments?

Paying extra on your mortgage can save a substantial amount of money and also decrease the length of your mortgage.

Having a mortgage is a form of good debt but you pay tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest over the life of the loan.

If my wife and I paid an extra $100/month on our mortgage, then we would save over $31,000 in interest on our loan!

Want to know how much you can save on your mortgage by making extra payments? Dave Ramsey has a mortgage payoff calculator on his site that you use.

6) Read How to Become More Financially Savvy

Education in yourself is the best investment you can make. Educating yourself about finance and all things money will pay off for the rest of your life!

Want to become more financially savvy in the new year? Then continue reading and learning how to do just that.

A couple finance books I’ve read this year and highly recommend are Total Money Makeover and How to Retire Early with Real Estate.

You will learn so much more in these books than how to just save money or pay off debt.


7) Buy Used to Save More Money

There are some things in this life I will never buy used. Some examples are shoes or mattresses. I don’t want anyone’s toe fungus or anything like there.

On the other side, there are many things I would buy used like cars, appliances, or electronics.

You will become a millionaire much faster buying used cars versus buying new cars. Some appliances you can buy used to save money such as a tv or a box freezer.

I’ve personally bought multiple used phones in my life. You can buy a phone used and likely recoup all but $100 you spent on it in the first place. There’s no need to spend $1,000 or more on a brand new cell phone. You can easily buy a $200 or $300 phone on Swappa which will last for years to come.


8) Invest for Free with RobinHood

I love investing. But I hate investing when there are fees involved. Luckily, there’s an app where you can buy and sell stocks for free!

It’s called Robinhood and I love it. I’ve used stock trading platforms before where each trade can cost you $5 or even $10. Those commissions can really add up over time.

Not on Robinhood though. You can buy or sell stocks for free. What’s better than that?

On top of that, if you sign up for RobinHood with my referral link here, then Robinhood will automatically give you and me both a free share of random stock (anywhere from $2.50 to $200). Did I mention it’s free? :)


You don’t have to accomplish all 8 of these goals I’ve written about. Just choose a couple goals that you are passionate about for this next year.

Write it down where you can see it and check up on the goal once a month. You won’t regret it :)

Just so you know, I only recommend products and services I believe in 100%. I may receive commissions from products linked to this page.