ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — CPA Dave Young said now is the time for you to undertake a summer financial makeover.
Young said check your paycheck withholding to make sure you’re having enough money taken out. “Last year a lot of people were surprised that their withholding changed, and unless they went back and changed it since then, it’s still going to be set at that withholding level. So if you owed quite a bit of money on your income taxes this past year, you may want to have a little bit extra withheld now so you don’t have any surprises coming up next year.”
Beyond your payroll withholding, Young said this is the time to get everything organized. “Get your tax papers organized and all your other important papers. Get them in one spot. Maybe scan them so they’re archived in case those papers get destroyed. But get things organized now while you have a little bit of time in the summer.”
Destroy it if you don’t need it, but make sure you archive it if it’s a critical paper by scanning it. And that’s part of a green, efficient strategy. “Writing checks is passé now,” said Young. “Now everything can be done online. So maybe you can set some of your utility bills, you know the bills that are reoccurring are perfect for online automatic payments and the ones that are one-offs you can pay right online. That way it’s a lot easier to track because it’s already archived for you. You’ll have it there on your system and it will actually help you with your budget as well.”
Check your credit to make sure everything is in order. “A lot of times people who have their identity stolen, it takes months before they even realize, because people are messing around with their credit,” Young said. “They don’t even look at their report.”
Put a plan in place to pay down your debt and build an emergency fund. “You want to have a few months worth of money in a checking or savings account, liquid cash in case there’s a problem with your car,” Young offered. “Who knows? Anything can happen. So you have money to go to, and you don’t have to go hit that credit card.”
Young also said make sure all of your insurance policies are up to date.