Imagine someone approaches you and wants to write you a check to pay this month’s electric bill, fully fund your emergency savings, or pay off your mortgage. Do you know your numbers well enough to tell them the dollar amount you need on the spot?
In 2009, my husband and I–while working toward becoming debt free and down to our last $2,300 of student loan debt–were blessed to be in that exact situation. We didn’t need to log in to our account or call customer service to inquire about our specific need. We were prepared for the blessing and were excited to receive it. Know your numbers and prepare for the 2015 financial blessings that have already been prepared for you!
Resolve to know the following numbers:
- Your monthly salary, both before and after taxes
- How much you need to fully fund your emergency savings (6 months of expenses)
- Your credit card balances and interest rates
- The private seller value of your car and the amount you owe on it
- Your student loan balance
- The price of the car, vacation, house, etc. you want to purchase this year
- The amount you need to start setting aside monthly to retire with confidence and/or send your kids to college
- How much is in your 401(k), TSP, Roth IRA, etc.
- The death benefit of your (and your spouse’s) life insurance policy
- The number of months it would take you to become completely debt-free