Make Ends Meet: Taking a holistic approach to finances
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - American families are facing the highest level of price hikes we have seen in more than four decades.
Families do not have control over the ever-rising cost of food, housing, gas and everything else needed to live comfortably, but there are things that can be done to help with more financially secure decision.
WalletHub’s new 2022 Financial Health Survey allowed Americans to share their fears, concerns and needs when it comes to their financial health.
Some key statistics from the survey include:
- Young people want more in-depth financial advice. Young people are nearly three times more likely than those over 59 to say that a complete look at their financial health would be very helpful.
- A credit score is one piece of the puzzle. 55% of people think a credit score alone is not sufficient for managing their finances.
- There is demand for a free WalletScore. WalletHub offers a free service monitoring credit scores, reports and credit improvement called WalletScore. 52% of people said they were interested in the free service.
- Emergency preparedness is lacking. 30% of people say they are not prepared for a financial emergency.
- Retirement plans are in trouble. More than half (53%) of people say they are not on track for retirement.
- A complete financial picture is much needed. 40% of people think a complete look at their financial health would be extremely helpful.
A holistic financial plan looks at every aspect of your financial life. Taking a holistic approach may not be easy, but it will pay off.
Jill Gonzalez, an analyst for WalletHub, stressed if we have learned anything over the past two years from the pandemic, it is to look at the big picture, especially when it comes to our finances.
“(It’s) almost the middle of the year,” Gonzalez said. “This is a great time to really take stock of how your finances look; what you want to do in terms of setting goals.”
The holistic approach looks at your ideal lifestyle, goals, values, and priorities to create something that works best for them.
“It’s your credit score, plus your savings, especially retirement savings, plus your debt that really make up this overall holistic picture,” Gonzalez said.
This way of looking at your finances will give you a better picture of your strengths and weaknesses while preparing a plan, day-to-day or for the future.
It can be daunting to examine your budget, college savings, investing strategy, retirement planning or estate planning, but your wallet and your wealth can become healthier after that examination.
“It’s not just one thing,” Gonzalez said. “It’s really all of these things put together.”
When taking a holistic approach, ask yourself, “What are your financial goals?”
Some of these goals could include creating a budget, tackling your high-interest debt, or redirecting as much money as you can toward your goals and that debt.
Plan as much as you can for emergencies. Looking at the bigger financial picture may give you a little clarity, a little peace of mind and help you plan financially for whatever stage in life you may be.
You do not have to do this alone. You can also look for a holistic financial advisor.
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