If you are planning a good spring cleaning of your home, your car, or even your life, don’t forget to add your finances to that regimen. We recommend dedicating one day of your spring cleaning plans to focus on your financial well-being. Here are four tasks to get you started.
Review your credit
Spring is a good time to review your credit report and you can do it for free. At annualcreditreport.com, you can download your credit report from each of the three credit reporting bureaus once a year. We recommend spreading them out so you can do a quick review three times a year. You’ll want to look for mistakes on your report and get them corrected as soon as you can. Additionally, accounts that you didn’t open could be an indicator of identity fraud; regular review of your credit reports could help you spot this early on.
Check your credit score
After reviewing your credit report, you may also want to take a look at your credit score. 1st United members have access to their FICO® Score, updated quarterly, for free. You can view it by logging in to your account, select Statements & Notices, then click on the FICO® Score banner. It is also printed on your quarter-end statement.
Ditch those documents
Take stock of your financial papers and dispose of those you no longer need. Typically, you can get rid of tax documents and bank statements after 7 years. If you are not sure if you can trash something, review these recommendations before you get rid of it. And be sure to shred important documents – never toss them in the trash. You can also receive many of your documents electronically, which can make them easier to store and organize.
Make over your budget
If you have had any changes to your employment, salary, family, or housing, you may need to re-evaluate how you’re managing your money. A weekly or a monthly budget will give you a closer handle on how you spend and where you can save. If needed, contact your creditors to move credit card or loan due dates so they better align with your pay days.
Spring cleaning can make things feel new again. If you take time to go through these simple tasks, you may find a renewed excitement about your finances and future possibilities. 1st United Credit Union is here to help you with your financial planning so never hesitate to reach out with questions or for guidance. Additionally, through our partnership with BALANCE, 1st United members can get additional help with repairing their credit history. It’s never too late to get your financial life in order. Happy spring cleaning!
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