As one year ends and another begins, it’s the perfect time to look back at the financial successes and mistakes of the past 12 months and make some goals for going forward. In areas of saving, spending, planning, and budgeting, it’s always a good idea to reevaluate what works and what needs changing or updating. You also may need to remind yourself of your financial goals that you might have made last year and may not have kept up with. A professional financial planner like the ones at DeSantis, Kiefer, Shall & Sarcone can help you get on track to have an even more successful financial year in the months ahead.


Saving money can be a challenge when there are so many bills and other expenses you have to pay, but it’s important to make sure you put even a small amount away. You never know when an emergency will arise and you’ll need to fall back on those savings to support you or to fund an unexpected expense.

A great way to build your savings account is to pay yourself first every time you get a paycheck. Even if it’s a small amount, make sure you set aside that money for savings before you turn your attention to bills and debts. And if you don’t have to worry about paying bills and you always have a robust bank account, it’s still important to make sure you have a separate savings account with funds you don’t touch unless they are absolutely needed in an emergency.

One way to maximize your savings is to open a high-yield savings account. These accounts pay you a higher interest rate than a regular savings account, so you will passively increase your savings over time.


Are you spending your money the way you want to? No matter how much money you have at your disposal, it’s good to be conscious of where it’s going and what you are spending it on. It’s easy to collect subscriptions you no longer really use, overspend on goods and groceries, forget to make returns, and so on. With the start of the new year, it’s an excellent time to go over your spending habits and go through all your subscriptions to make sure you are spending your money in a way that actually benefits you.  


In a similar vein to saving, making a plan on how to make the most of your money is important. This includes retirement savings, stocks, IRAs, 401(k)s, and planning for specific events in the future you know you will need a lot of funding for, such as college, a wedding, a home, a vacation, and so on. It’s good to diversify where you put your money so that you’re never reliant solely on one account and you always have money growing somewhere.


Budgets are important if funds are low, but they’re still wise even if you’re financially comfortable. A budget allows you to designate how much money you want to spend in each area of your life or business, ensuring you keep to the plan and don’t overspend. It also allows you to get a clear picture of your financial health and how much you can afford in each spending category–including bills and paying off debts like mortgages and loans.

If you already have a budget in place, it’s a good idea to periodically check to see if you need to make changes in any budgeting category as your finances change (hopefully due to growth!). Your needs may also go through some changes, with debts being paid off or new debts taken on, certain areas of spending may shrink or grow, and you may find changes how you prioritize your spending categories. The new year is a great time to adjust those budgets to fit your needs and goals currently and going forward.

Improve Your Financial Health for the New Year

At DeSantis, Kiefer, Shall & Sarcone, we work with individuals and businesses to help them manage their financial health and reach their goals. We understand that everyone has their own unique financial situation, and we take the time to work closely with each client to make an effective plan for achieving financial success. As you look to the year ahead, we can help you take steps to improve your financial health for the new year.