How To Take Care Of Your Finances This Holiday Season

As we kick off the holiday season, it's easy to get wrapped up in spending more, or even going into debt, without really noticing. For our hygge month, we’re sharing some ideas for financial self-care that you can do right now. These ideas will help you feel in control of your money while also helping you to make positive long-term changes.

Check your credit score. Checking up on your credit is one of the easiest financial check-ins you can do, which can be as easy as signing onto a website like Credit Karmato see your score. Want to take this to the next level? Check out our guide to boosting your credit score by making small tweaks to the way you pay bills. 

Transfer $50 to savings. It’s so easy to get distracted from saving money. New shoes, a movie ticket and a meal out are often far more exciting than an extra $50 in the bank. But having a safety net (especially in a high yield savings account) is so important. Making that first step is a signal to yourself that you are serious about saving.

Set up an investment account. This is sort of the ~advanced~ version of transferring a small amount of money to savings. If you already have a nice emergency fund going, you should consider investing some of your money. Doing so will grow your cash over time. We have a partnership with robo-advisor Ellevest. They are among the many options for opening an investment account.

Have a no-spend week (or day). Taking time to scale back spending by making coffee and meals at home or making do with what you have -- whether that’s a day or an entire week -- can be helpful when it comes to refocusing your spending. Not to mention, it helps you to save some money!

Donate $20 to charity. At She Spends, we talk about being good stewards of our finances. We think it’s important to give back to our communities in whatever small ways you can. This includes donating small sums of money when you have the ability to do so. May we suggest donating to our December fundraiser for Bottomless Closet? Check out more details here. 

Set up auto pay for your bills. Not only does setting up auto pay keep you from accidentally forgetting about a payment, but it also can keep your credit score high. Just be sure that your accounts are set up to have the same amount of money pulled from them at the same time each month. You don’t want to risk an accidental overdraft fee. 

Set up auto transfer from your checking to your savings account. Similar to auto paying your bills, auto-transferring money from your checking to your savings account each month can keep you on track for your savings goals. Nothing will be forgotten during December, a typically busy month for many. 

Talk with your significant other about your money goals. It’s important to check in on a regular basis with your partner about how you both view money. Do you have similar goals long term? How can you both tweak spending together so it fits in with your plans? Set up a time this month to talk to your partner. It will certainly be worth it.

-Alicia McElhaney, She Spends Issue 31