CHICAGO, Dec. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- As part of BMO Harris Bank's ongoing commitment to financial literacy and Helping Make Money Make Sense, BMO Harris is providing weekly financial tips. This week's tip provides the top four end-of-year financial planning tasks.
Between turkey and holiday cookies, don't forget the most important type of planning you should do this year, financial planning. BMO Harris offers these four aspects of your finances everyone should review before 2013 arrives.
Budgets: Review your monthly budget and track your spending. Keeping track of where your money is being spent will highlight unnecessary expenses. Begin saving today. A savings account can help when life throws an unexpected curve ball. Ideally, build an emergency fund that could pay your necessary expenses for six months.
Creating budgets with your children is also a great way to teach kids about money and the difference between a need and a want. Our Helpful Steps for Parents tool provides parents with tips, games, and strategies to help teach children financial literacy. Visit www.bmoharris.com/ parents to learn more.
Retirement: Examine how much you've been putting in your retirement account this year. If possible, plan to contribute the maximum allowable amount to your 401(K) and take advantage of your workplace retirement plan to gain matching contributions. If your workplace does not have a matching program consider a Roth IRA.
College: College planning is essential for every family whether you are just starting out or are planning to support a grandchild's education. If you have not started preparing for future college expenses, start now. College savings plans can offer considerable tax benefits. Each state offers residents a 529 college savings plan that provides tax benefits or other perks to help parents and students prepare for college bills.
Investments: Invest wisely. Investigate investment options to determine which is best to meet your financial needs. A few options include money market accounts, CDs and government bonds, and IRAs. Solid investments may reap dividends in the future.
We all know how important it is to save money and prepare for the future and reviewing your budget and investments will ensure you're meeting your financial goals.
For more helpful tips visit, http://helpingmakemoneymakesense.com/
Helping Make Money Make Sense is brought to you by BMO Harris Bank, WGN, CLTV, WGN AM 1070, Chicago Tribune, RedEye and Hoy.
About BMO Harris Bank
Based in Chicago, BMO Harris Bank N.A. provides a broad range of personal banking products and solutions through over 600 branches and approximately 1,300 ATMs in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kansas, Missouri, Minnesota, Nevada, Arizona and Florida. BMO Harris Bank's commercial banking team provides a combination of sector expertise, local knowledge and mid-market focus throughout the U.S. Deposit and loan products and services provided by BMO Harris Bank N.A. Member FDIC. BMO Harris BankSM is a trade name used by BMO Harris Bank N.A. BMO Harris Bank is part of BMO Financial Group, a North American financial organization with 1,600 branches, and a retail deposit base of approximately $180 billion.
SOURCE BMO Harris Bank