General Information


check.jpgAuthor Trudy M Howard  #smallbiztaxlady


1.) Your beneficiaries. This one is huge! Countless people forget to change beneficiaries after a divorce, break-up, etc. and sadly, monies are distributed to the original beneficiaries, not the intended beneficiaries. Take a moment to review your retirement accounts, bank accounts, life insurance, (even that free accidental death policy from your bank), and ensure that your beneficiaries reflect your intended beneficiaries, and not old beneficiaries.

2.) Your Insurance coverage. It’s estimated that 70% of people purchase insurance, put the policy in the drawer, and simply pay the premiums as they come in. This is a HUGE MISTAKE! As your life changes, so should your coverage. Do you have more valuables in your home then when you first purchased it? Are your earning more (which means you need to increase your disability/life insurance coverage)? Is your insurance company still competitive? Loyalty to a brand can cost you THOUSANDS in premiums & coverage. Call around and get some quotes from a broker that represents several carriers. The more carriers, the more options & BENEFITS you have available to you.

3.) Your bank account. Are you being charged fees that you are unaware of? Banks like to institute new fees such as account maintenance, and non ATM withdrawal fees at the beginning of the year. Also, go over your old statements to see if there are any charges that you don’t recognize. Scammers and identify theft thieves rely on people not monitoring their accounts; remember the thieves that stole millions by taking PENNIES at a time!

4.) Your 401k allocations. Are you one who just sets it and forgets it? If so, now is the perfect time to see if your fund is performing the way that you intended. If you are losing money, you may need to reallocate funds from heavy equity investments to more debt securities. As a rule of thumb, remember the longer the fund date, the more risk. A 2040 retirement fund will have heavier investments in stocks & riskier products than the 2025 retirement fund.

5.) Your health, AKA YOUR ANNUAL PHYSICAL! Without our health, everything suffers. Make sure you get your suggested screenings, know your blood pressure readings (high blood pressure is related to stroke, wreaks havoc on your heart, and a host of other issues), and monitor your weight. Also know your A1C levels (monitors how your body regulates insulin)! This is especially important to those of African American & Hispanic heritage as those groups are more susceptible to Diabetes.

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