New Year Resolutions

2 January 2008

I love New Year not because it’s an excuse to go out until the early hours but because it’s an opportunity to start afresh and make changes in my life. It’s psychological – I would never dream of writing down my ambitions for the other 364 days in the year, but on 31 December you can normally find me scribbling down various lofty goals on a scrap of paper that is invariably lost before the clock hits midnight.

Most years, at least one of my resolutions is financial – for example, last year I wanted to buy my own house (which, I’m glad to report, I did) and take out a pension (ditto).

But in 2008 my financial resolutions are going to be set a little lower, although I know they will make a massive different in the long term.

1. I will stop just making the minimum repayments on my credit card and either move the debt onto a 0% balance transfer and purchase card or pay the whole thing off. Like most people, I am just too scared to think about how much things I buy on credit end up costing me!

2. I will either start making regular payments to my ISA or get a new one. My current ISA only has about £70 in it and I have no idea what the interest rate is. I don’t have anything specific to save up for but it would be nice to know that next time I fancy a holiday or a new outfit I don’t have to pay for it out of my salary and live on baked beans for the rest of the month.

3. I will check my bank statement every month. I never do this (too depressing to see all that money coming out and not much coming in) but I worry that I wouldn't even notice if my card was cloned. Before writing this blog I had a quick look online and discovered my life insurance premium was taken out twice in December – so I’ve already saved a few quid by spending just a few (painful) minutes scanning my financial movements.

4. Make sure I get my money back from my life insurance provider.

That’s it – I do have a few more non-financial resolutions but I shan’t bore you with all of them (one, for example, is to drink more water).

But I would like to know what everyone else is doing – what are your financial New Year resolutions for 2008 and why?

Happy New Year!