I have no biggies left, at least for now. I spent 2014 and 2015 completely revamping my financial picture: learning about investing, taking control of and moving my investments, learning more money math, etc. Stuff is pretty much in order.
So, this year’s goals are little maintenance ones, with a few tweaks:
- Optimize contributions to investment accounts. When I put $1500 into one, the government gifts the same with $3500. When I put $5000 into another, the government gifts me with $1000. Cool. (Does your employer or government match contributions on an account available to you? Access that!)
- Make those contributions early in the year. For my accounts, the government tosses in its contribution once per quarter, and takes up to 12 weeks to do so. If I throw my money in early January, the government is sure to top up by end of March. If I wait til April, I miss out on six months in the market! That can have a big cumulative effect.
- Separate our trust account. Long story, but I set up a trust for my son and me. The trust account is required to have an advisor’s input, and she can only sell me specific funds. For three years, I’ve been trying in vain to rebalance all my investments in relation to each other. Between my preferred approach and my advisor’s options, the math involved is simply beyond me. So, I am finally taking the step of addressing them separately.
- Rebalance. Once I year, I check in on my investment accounts and make three small adjustments to ensure I’m at my intended balance.
- Change dentists. I love my kid’s dentist. Her administrative assistant, though, is more difficult for me to work with. He gate-keeps questions between me and the dentist, which affects my son’s care as well as any planning around our coverage. He also will not disclose to me the details of our coverage or billing. That doesn’t work. These practices cost me time, energy, peace, and up to several hundred dollars per year (and potentially much more). Time to move on to a place that offers excellent dental care AND full access and administrative communication.
- Determine dental coverage. See above. I’m not sure what’s up between the insurer and the dental offices, but three dentists in 12 years have refused to disclose insurance and billing details. I’m going to pursue this matter down to the legislative powers that be, if that’s what it takes. I’m nearly 100% sure we’re entitled to know our coverage. Once we know it, and receive detailed copies of subsequent bills, we have full power over our dental finances.
- Open myself to $10/k year in new income. As of 2016, I’ve completed the employment-style contributions I felt able and compelled to make in the world. And, after six years, my child finally has support in addition to me! Woohoo! I’m freed up! I don’t “need” to bring in another $10k in employment income, but I feel newly resourced to commit to the energetic and administrative demands of a new job and am eager for the social contact, structure, learning curve, and cash bonus that one could bring.
- Keep studying. Post-secondary life is strangely lucrative for me. In terms of financial gain, grade, learning, and enjoyment, I completed my first course with strong results, so I’ll carry on.
- Continue buying (only) what I want and need. Nothing more and nothing less.
- Continue giving mindfully. After a tough few decades, I sure appreciate having more cash to give! I enjoy considering and researching where to give: what will create the biggest bang for my buck; what actually changes circumstances; what constitutes teaching a man to fish?
While doing the above, I’ll also be caring for myself, caring for my child, exploring housing ideas, volunteering at my son’s unschool, taking some free and cheap cooking classes, swimming, learning more and more music, visiting friends and family, building community, organizing and hosting community events, and so on.
Sounds good to me!
What are your financial goals for 2017? I would love to read them in the comments section for this post, or to see a link there to the same on your blog or forum thread!