Thursday, December 10, 2015

Thrifty Thinking: Year-End Money Tips

This holiday season, women are focused on giving to others, but might not be thinking about the ways they can gift themselves.
To help women set themselves up for a financially healthier 2016, Fidelity Investments is offering three smart money moves that women can make before Dec. 31, below.

Year-End Money Tips from Fidelity Investments:
1.       Just start thinking about it. Understanding how you are saving and spending can be a valuable step to helping put your financial house in order. You don’t necessarily need to manage every penny. Consider our guidelines:
·         Not more than 50% of your take-home pay should go to essential expenses, 15% of your pretax income to retirement savings, and 5% of your take-home pay to short-term savings.
·         Use this savings and spending check-up from Fidelity Investments to see where you stand.
2.       Feeling charitable? Charitable donations are an effective way to reduce your taxable income when you itemize on your tax returns.
·         If you’ve been meaning to make a donation and want to lower your tax bill for 2015, be sure to make your contributions by December 31.
·         Now is also a good time to clean out a closet or basement and donate clothing and household goods. Remember to get receipts for non-cash donations.
·         Kids in the family? Consider gifting and asking others to give to their 529 college savings plan to help save up for future education costs.
3.       Be good to yourself, too. Decide on a few simple financial actions you can take before 2016 and check these off your list to get a kick-start on a financially heathier New Year. For example: 
·         Use the money in your flexible spending account.
·         Check the beneficiaries on financial accounts and make sure you have designated a beneficiary for each account.

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