Day 28: Find Out How Bad (Or Good) Your Situation Really Is
Do you know how much you owe on your house? Do you know how much money you have in your checking account? How much would you need to payoff your automobile loan? Have you checked your credit report lately? As you begin to get out of debt and save money – you really need to know “where you are today”.
Create a list of your credit accounts – something like this:
Credit Card 1 – $4000
Credit Card 2 – $5214
Mortgage – $124,400
Hospital – $1300
Automobile – $16,000
If you don’t know how much you owe, then you really can’t begin to create a plan to get out of debt. So, go online (or call) and find out exactly how much you owe on each of your credit cards. Call your bank and find out the “payoff” amount for your automobiles. Call your mortgage company and find out the “payoff” or “remaining balance” on your mortgage. You need to know how tall the mountain is before you decide how to climb it.
Create a list of your savings / investment accounts – something like this:
Online Savings – $400
401K – $11,000
Pension Plan – $12,000 or X years of contributions
Social Security – Regular report from the Social Security Administration
Most retirement plans now offer online account management. Log-in to your account and find your balance. While your logged in, you might want to take a good look at the types of funds you are investing in. If you are a beginner, you might find that all of your retirement funds are going to one fund, one fund type, or they might be just sitting in a money market account, waiting for you to tell them what to do. If you have a pension plan or social security, keep up with the regular updates you should be receiving in the mail or from your employer (pension plan). While the numbers besides these accounts might be “estimate” – it’s still good to know “where you stand”.
If you haven’t checked your credit report lately, click here to read my article about how to get 3 (or 6) annual credit reports – for free!
You should also consider a list of insurance policies and any other accounts that could effect your long-term financial situation.
Have you recently “run the numbers” and added up how much you actually owe? Are you doing better (or worse) than you originally thought? Leave a comment and let us know.
Observant readers will note that this series has taken much longer than 33 days. I can assure you, I am blogging as often as life permits.