If you are interested in getting your finances in order, you might try taking small steps. I’ve been sharing financial checklists at different places I write, and have shared a checklist for January and February in different places.
I thought I’d share a March money checklist here. Here are four ideas for small steps you can take in March to improve your money life:
- Check your credit card terms: Double check your credit card terms. Most of the Credit CARD Act rules just went into effect, but there are still plenty of ways for credit card issuers to hammer you. Read what comes from your cards, and make notes of new fees, higher fees, and new interest rates. Credit card issuers have to give you 45 days notice, so you have time to think about whether you want to keep those accounts, and what you should do about negative changes to your card agreements.
- Consider opening a Health Savings Account: You can increase your tax efficiency with a little savvy handling of your health care costs. Open a HSA, and you will find that your contributions are tax deductible up to a certain point. Plus, you might find that a high deductible plan saves you money in insurance premiums. Carefully consider your options, and maybe get professional financial advice to determine whether or not a HSA is right for you.
- Look at your homeowners insurance: Few people review their policies. Make sure you are adequately covered for the value of your home, and what’s in it. Look for gaps. Realize that many policies do not cover fire, flood, earthquake, hurricane or tornado. You may not be covered like you think you are. Decide if you need additional coverage.
- Get rid of junk mail: Get rid of some of the temptation and clear up some of the clutter (and save a few trees) by going to www.dmachoice.org and optoutprescreen.com to stop junk mail and pre-screened credit offers.