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End-of-Year Financial Checklist

ByJosh Chamberlain

With the holidays upon us, it can be difficult to make time to get your finances in order. Many people put off closing their year until well into the next year (ever scramble in April to get all your tax work completed?). But there are several time-sensitive financial moves you should consider now in order to successfully close out 2018.

  1. Review Your Open Enrollment Options and Optimize Your Selections

Make sure that you and your spouse are coordinated on health care and dependent spending, as well as 401(k) and Roth saving goals.

  1. Adjust Your Tax Withholdings

If you had a child in 2017, have been through a divorce, have changed jobs, or had a change in income, you will likely need to adjust your withholdings. 

  1. Fund Long Term Savings Vehicles (401(k), Roth IRA, IRA, SEP IRA, 529s).

The contribution limit for the 401(k) is $18,000 and the IRA is $5,500. Beware that there are limits on IRAs depending on your income. If you are self-employed, take the time to fund a SEP IRA, which has much higher limits than a standard IRA or 401(k).

  1. Check Your Health and Dependent Care Flexible Spending Plans

Track down receipts and enter them now. If you have not used all of your money, it’s time to do it now. Also, if you have reached your health care deductible, it may make sense to see the doctor one more time to take care of anything you have been putting off.

  1. Set an End-Of-Year Budget

There is a lot going on: gifts, travel, family events, parties, family pictures. Start to think of some limits that you want to set.

  1. Start Planning for Next Year

Set up a meeting with your financial planner. Now is the time to start setting some longer-term goals for next year and help secure your retirement for tomorrow. 

Josh Chamberlain, long-time resident of Glenwood Park, is the Principal of Chamberlain Financial Advisors. He enjoys helping professionals and couples determine their long- and short-term goals, creating personalized financial plans, and helping them achieve their life goals.

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