• January 23, 2024
  • Posted by General Electric Credit Union

5 Financial Goals to Tackle in 2024

Two-thirds of Americans have a financial resolution for the new year.1 Whether you’ve made a money-related resolution in the past or are doing so for the first time, we put together a list of common goals to inspire you this year. 

New Years financial goals for 2024

1. Pay down (or off) your debt

One of the most common resolutions is to pay down debt, whether that’s student loans or high-interest credit card debt. Paying this off helps you potentially save on interest and frees up money in your budget. 

If you want to pay off or at least pay down a substantial amount, it’s important to have a plan. In the case of credit card debt, it’s often wise to put extra funds, such as a bonus, tax return, or overtime toward cards with the highest interest rate. Once you pay down one debt completely, continue this strategy with the next highest interest rate. Ultimately, you’ll pay down all your cards faster and spend less on interest.

You could also consolidate your high-interest debt to one low-rate card through a balance transfer. Not only does the lower rate make debt payoff more affordable, but reducing the number of accounts you must submit payments to will also streamline the process. 

  • Tip: Take advantage of aggregator tools such as Money Management which can track your debt and tell you when it will be paid off in full as well as provide strategies to pay it down sooner.

2. Build an emergency fund

Establishing or replenishing an emergency fund should be a top priority. Life is unpredictable, and having a financial safety net can provide peace of mind during unexpected events like medical emergencies, car repairs, or job loss. Aim to save at least three to six months' worth of living expenses in your emergency fund. 

To create an emergency fund, start by looking at your budget. Review your spending and determine how much you have leftover each month. Commit a portion of that money to a savings account separate from your existing savings account so you aren’t tempted to use it. How much you should stow away depends on your financial circumstances. 

To boost your efforts, set up automatic transfers to your account through online banking or payroll deductions to effortlessly save. 

3. Become more financially literate 

No one starts out in life knowing everything they need to know about borrowing, saving, and spending. If you don’t feel confident making financial decisions or are currently dealing with the fallout from making an uninformed one, improving your financial literacy is a fantastic goal to pursue in 2024. Read blog content, watch webinars, and listen to podcasts focused on money matters. If you’re short on time, the latter can be seamlessly incorporated into your daily routine. Simply put on a podcast before leaving for work and make your commute a learning opportunity!  

4. Save for retirement

Whether you’re nearing retirement or are still early in your career, saving more now will help you in the future. Make retirement account contributions a priority, whether they’re to an employer-sponsored 401(k) or an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). The 2024 contribution limit for 401(k)s is $23,000 while the limit for IRAs is $7,000. 

5. Improve your credit score

Your credit score comes into play during some of life’s most expensive transactions, such as purchasing a car or buying a home. Lenders look at this score to determine your creditworthiness and will offer a rate based on this decision. The higher the rate, the more you’ll pay in interest over the life of a loan. 

A higher rate on credit cards also makes monthly payments more expensive and can quickly cause a balance to snowball if you miss a payment. Ultimately, it’s important to improve your credit score in the new year to make borrowing more affordable in the long run.  

2024 is an opportunity for a fresh start on your financial journey. By setting clear and attainable financial goals, you can take control of your finances, build a more secure future, and work toward achieving the financial freedom you deserve. 

General Electric Credit Union members can use Money Management to access debt payoff strategies and track their progress, open a Thrive Money Market Account to grow their emergency fund faster with a great rate, and open an IRA to securely save for retirement. Live or work in the Tri-State? You can bank with us and put 2024 financial goals into motion. 

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