End-of-Year Peace of Mind

flowerIt’s Halloween. Soon Thanksgiving. And then the holidays. Are your wallet and filing cabinet ready?

Here are four questions to ask yourself as the end of 2009 approaches:

  • What gifts do you have to buy, how much will you spend, and is the cash available? Make a list–and if necessary make tough choices now. Remember, frugal is the new black. Friends and family might welcome a tactful discussion about scaling back.
  • In January, you’ll need to gather your financials to prepare your taxes. Is everything in order? Would an extra 30 minutes per weekend between now and then make it so?
  • If you’re self-employed, and haven’t paid your quarterly estimated taxes, you might owe money to Uncle Sam. Do you have it? If not, April is six months away; Start stashing now.
  • Your favorite charities will soon begin asking for end-of-year donations. Who will you give to, and how much? We adore Women for Women International. For $29 a month, you can provide financial support to women survivors of war in countries like the Congo and Afghanistan.

Now, take a deep breath, and pat yourself on the back. It’s not quite November, and you’re already more in control than you were five minutes ago.

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