It’s the start of a new year, and what better way to begin a prosperous, more productive year than by checking on the things that will make your life better, safer, and more enjoyable? Various check-ups in your life can save you time and eliminate frustration. Use this checklist to get you started.
• Social Security
There are many benefits to making a social security profile online, including access to estimates of your future retirement, disability, and survivors benefits at your fingertips. Even more benefits are available online; make an account now at ssa.gov.
• Check Your Credit
Having a great credit score and understanding what that means is a vital part of your credit health. You can get a free FICO estimate from myfico.com, as well as learn ways to improve your FICO score. Many credit card companies now offer free credit reports – check to see if yours does, or you are also eligible for a free credit report once a year from annualcreditreport.com.
• Check Your Finances
If you think back on last year, are you happy with your spending, earnings, and savings? Have you ever sat down to create a budget? Budgets don’t tie you down; they can be flexible, but it may take some practice to create one that works for you. If budgeting is a check-up you shouldn’t ignore, there are many free apps you can download on your phone that can help.
• Get a Tax Preview
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a ballpark figure of what you may get back from your taxes? If you sit down and take the time to browse a free tax estimator site, you can take a look at what you’ll get in return, along with areas you may need to adjust before the tax deadline. Try it out for free at 1040.com.
• Be Energy Efficient
Cutting your energy usage will not only help the environment, but your pockets as well. SCE makes it easy for you to manage online so that you’re not overspending and wasting energy. The “My Account” option allows you to have energy management at your fingertips, including features that are designed to help you save. Check it out at sce.com.
• Check for Recalls
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 30% of recalled vehicles are never brought to a dealer to be fixed. If you purchased your car from a dealership, you should receive a recall notification in the mail if there is a problem. But we recommend you check the list yourself at least once a year at safercar.gov.
These check-ups may seem small, but they’re worth it for your health and happiness! Be sure to check them off your list as soon as possible. W