So we’re almost halfway through 2017, have you been good and keeping up with your money resolutions? If your answer is yes, then you certainly deserve a pat on the back because we’re willing to guess that it has not been easy.
Still, if you haven’t been doing so well on the financial front, don’t fret! Here’s how to get your second wind and achieve your money goals for the next half of the year!
1. Amp Up Your Savings Goals
If your savings goals are nowhere near what you were hoping it would be by the time you hit mid-year, don’t beat yourself up. Now is the time to reflect and figure out what went wrong and how you can get back on track.
Did you set too high a savings goal or had unexpected money situations pop up? The best thing to do is start fresh! Go back to basics and try to put away just 10% of your earnings every month.
Also, if you don’t have the discipline to put the money away yourself, just open another savings account and set up a standing instruction for money to be deducted on the first day your salary comes in.
Now, if you actually stuck with the program and achieved your savings goals – congrats! But don’t stop yet; think about the possibility of bumping up your monthly saving contributions or diversifying your savings pot. For example, consider putting your money in a high-interest Fixed Deposit account for better returns.
2. Your Side Business Goals
Almost everybody needs a side income! If you were planning on making 2017 the year you finally embarked on a business adventure – how is it going so far? If your answer is – “I didn’t even get started” – well, now is the time to start!
Make time for yourself every weekend or better still, free up an hour each night to work on your business ideas and to see how far you’ve progressed again after thirty days.
In our money resolutions article last year, we asked you to think about starting an international business and we still think this is a really good idea! This is because economically, our currency isn’t doing much better against the USDs or GBPs just yet. So if you want to earn more, it’s time to think global!
On the other hand, if you did take our advice and start your international business, there’s no time like the present to take stock of your progress.
Identify the parts of your business activities that could do with improvements and make the necessary changes. Do you need to respond faster, get more customers or find a better, cost-effective method to receive payments? Take the time to address such issues to advance your business!
3. Retirement Planning Goals
If you’ve been letting this goal take the backseat because you figure it’s still a long time away, have we got news for you! Time flies and even if you already have something stashed by way of your EPF, it’s not enough.
Here’s what you should do if you are between the ages of 20 to 30 years old: consider taking advantage of the PRS Youth Incentive. As per Budget 2017, the incentive will match your contribution of RM1, 000 into the account which is basically, RM1,000 of free money! Moreover, you can claim up RM3, 000 of tax relief for your PRS contributions, so its win-win.
If you are being good and keeping to your retirement planning objectives, you’ve earned yourself another pat on the back. We’d also like you to think about the strength of your health insurance coverage. If yours isn’t sufficient, paying for healthcare could really dig into your retirement reserves.
In addition, you might also want to look into further growing your EPF account though the Members’ Investment Scheme.
4. Debt Repayment Goals
If you were stuck in debt last year and looked to 2017 to be free of it, we hope you were victorious. If you weren’t, there’s still time to dust yourself off and try again.
There are a number of methods and options to repay your debt. But of course, if they do not suit your earning capabilities or spending style, it’s likely to fail.
So step one is to discover if you would prefer to clear off smaller debts first or if you’d be more satisfied to target the big ones.
Both methods have their advantages, if you clear lighter debts first, you’ll have fewer accumulated debts and you’ll be able to channel your money toward clearing off bigger debt, more efficiently later on.
On the other hand, if you prefer to tackle the heaviest debt first, you’ll have the opportunity to save more on interest costs. If you’ve tried on your own and just can’t seem to get yourself out of debt, now is the time to seek help, before things get bad.
Wherever you are with your goals, we wish you all the best! Do check back often with RinggitPlus for more tips and guides for navigating your financial life!