Take Control of Your Finances in 2024: Strategies for Minnesotans to Live Within Their Means

With the arrival of 2024, it’s a great time for Minnesotans to take a fresh look at their finances. From budgeting commitments to cash savings and insurance considerations, here are some strategies for navigating personal finances in the new year.

2020’s Financial Challenges: Inflation and Record Highs for Credit Cards

MINNEAPOLIS — 2023 was a year with its share of financial ups and downs. Americans faced inflation and record highs on credit card rates, while shrinking wallets and declining savings were also commonplace. Money was, and still is, on the minds of many Minnesotans as they enter the new year.

Forget the Past, Get Serious on Budgeting

Forty-eight percent of Americans polled say they are likely to make and keep a resolution to manage their money better or save more in 2024, according to an Allianz survey. It’s a perfect time to make a fresh start and learn how to live within your means. Brian Eder, founder and partner at Voyage Wealth Architects recommends taking proactive measures to examine what you may be able to learn and apply to the future.

That said, it’s also important to note that although it’s easier than ever to track where your money goes, digital technologies have also made it easier to spend it. To effectively monitor your money, download transactions and begin categorizing them one by one.

Hopping on the Cash Train

For those wanting to get serious about budgeting, one of the best strategies is going all cash. Take out a pile of cash for the month, and when you hand it over at the checkout, you tend to think more carefully about purchases. Also known as the “envelope method” or “cash-only challenge,” this approach often results in spending up to 40% less in a month.

Take Jordan Cully of South Minneapolis, for instance. He has chosen to use cash and a 100-day envelope challenge to save more money. “Every time I get cash, I’ll put $5 in the $5 envelope and then $10 in the $10 envelope and kind of save up,” he says.

Start with Insurance Policies

Another great place to start reviewing your finances is your insurance policy. Take time to check your deductibles, limitations, and coverage levels. If you’re unsure, it’s totally OK to reach out to your agent for advice.

Common Mistakes To Avoid When Improving Your Finances

According to Eder, the two most common mistakes to avoid when improving your personal finances are setting unrealistic goals or forgetting about them. Investors may want to consider not taking advantage of IRS limits for 401Ks and profit-sharing plans.

The Bottom Line: Learn To Live Within Your Means

Whatever you do to get on the right financial path this year, Eder’s advice boils down to one phrase: Learn to live within your means. It’s the best piece of advice anyone can give. Keeping realistic expectations and making the most of your earnings should be at the heart of any financial strategy. Here’s to a financially prosperous 2024!