January Money Checklist

 Happy New Year!

Sorry it's been a long second - the logistics of moving to a new home, social distancing and homeschooling kids took a lot of my mental bandwidth and left me too overwhelmed to blog. I'm back to share my January Money Checklist. It's a list of tasks that I complete at the beginning of the year to help me plan for the next 12 months and recap the previous 12.

  1. Make annual spending plan. Start with expected annual income and slot in expected annual expenses. Some big  ticket expenses that I set a yearly amount aside for are travel, vacation, gifts and kids extracurricular activities. 
  2. Make annual saving/investment plan. Once step 1 is completed, it's easy to know how much money you'll have leftover for this step. For me, my annual saving and investing plan order of priority is
    • Fund retirement account (RRSP)
    • Fund kids education savings plan
    • Fund tax free investment account
  3. Check insurance quotes for home and auto to confirm that I'm still getting different rates
  4. Make list of all the receipts and documents I need to have in preparation for tax season.
  5. Set passive income target. Not sure why this is number 5 but I also set a mental target for extra cash I want to see coming in from deals, discounts, interest, dividends, bonuses (when I had a job), tax refund and side hustle. 
  6. Decide on my spending mantra for the year. This is a personal little habit I have. My mantra is usually based on just looking around at the world around me and deciding how I should respond with my financial resources. Last year, my mantra was "Hoard cash and stay close to home". This year, it's "Stewardship"

Dear reader, have you started working on your January Money Checklist? Begin with the end in mind!

Happy New Year