Dear Smart Money People,
Cinderella had a fairy godmother. Luke Skywalker had Yoda.
We all need someone in our lives giving us a little sage wisdom every now and then.
It is important that someone provides the insights they have gained from having been there. As a busy wife, mom, employee, blogger, I thought it might be helpful, if you were busy too, and didn’t have an Obi-Wan Knobi in your life, to have a list of things to take care of in your life.
10 things you need to do in life
Before anything, find God. Whatever your beliefs and life experiences I know it will be made richer and deeper when you connect with God.
Back to the life checklist:
- Medical Insurance.
The number one reason for bankruptcy in this country is medical debts. If you don’t have medical insurance through your employer look into independent policies. Depending on your income at a minimum you should have catastrophic coverage. Here is a good post on the 5 Reasons Why You Must Have Health Insurance.
- A Will.
No matter where you are in life you should have a will. A Will is a document in which a person specifies the method to be applied in the management and distribution of his/her estate. At the end of the day, we will all leave the earth. Having a Will is being kind to those you love to let them know what to do with your stuff when you are no longer here.
- Take care of your car.
Change the oil in your car every 3,000 miles or whatever your car manufacturer recommends. I learned this lesson the hard way. Think ceased engine. Not good. Rotate your tires and have regular car maintenance. Set a reminder in google calendar or download the checklist for the things to remember annually. Here is a pretty good article on car maintenance.
- Take care of your home.
Change the air filters in your home or apartment. Your apartment might be covered by the apartment association, but your home is on you. Changing the air filters keeps your HVAC unit functioning at its best. Also, make sure you schedule annual maintenance to assure the system is functioning well and all parts and fluids are in good shape. Murphy’s law will find you on the hottest or coldest day of the year if you don’t. Trust me, I know. Here is a great checklist from Better Homes & Gardens.
- Be vigilant about your career or business.
Update your resume regularly and interview a few times a year for different positions. I know you may be happy or content with your job but nothing is more validating then updating your resume with new skills and talking to recruiters and hiring managers about new roles. You never know when a better opportunity might be out there. The same applies if you own a business. Always be networking. The speed of change is relentless and you want to be ready to change as industry changes. Check out this article from Forbes for 7 Ways to Advance Your Career.
- Annual Physical Exams and Teeth Cleanings.
We are so busy at times that we can forget about our annual appointments. However, the intent of these visits is for early detection. Knowing if your blood pressure is a little high or if you need to lose a few pounds can be a lifesaving game changer. Here is a helpful article from the Center for Disease Control on the importance of regular check-ups.
- Saving and Investing.
The earlier you start the better off you will be. The average American has less than $1000 in savings. The average percentage a person contributes to their retirement investment is 2 – 3%. You should aim for 15% and absolutely max out the government 401(k) or similar retirement plan contribution of $19,000 (for 2019). Davey Ramsey’s book Total Money Makeover, his radio talk show and free resources were the golden ticket for Bill and I. Here is a post from Dave on investing. Check it out!!
- Review Your Net Worth Annually.
No better way to know if you are on track for meeting your goals (read about goal setting here) then check in annually on your savings and investments. Include your HSA accounts as well those can be a game-changer for having money for expenses in your retirement years. Natalie Bacon is an online entrepreneur and blogger that wrote this great post on How to Track Your Net Worth. She’s a superstar, you should check her out.
- Document Where All of Your Stuff Is.
Item number 2 on our list was about having a Will but let’s face it, there are lots of things to manage in your life. Like your pets vet and where you do your banking. Use this list to log all your important information and keep it in a safe place, but here is the key, let someone know where it is – a trusted friend, relative or parent. I have included a printable tracking sheet that you can use to begin tracking all of your important documents and necessary information. See below.
- Identify Theft Insurance.
This seems like an odd one to add to the list but with all the breaches that happen on a fairly regular basis, you might want to consider this type of coverage. We use Zanders. It is endorsed by Dave Ramsey and we have read and followed Dave’s guidance for many years. Check out their affordable plans HERE.
I hope this was helpful!!
Cheering you on!
Always in your corner.
Karen & Bill