3 Ways to Refresh Your Finances

Monday, February 26 at 02:00 PM
Category: Personal Finance

Each New Year presents an opportunity for you to refresh your financial outlook with a clear perspective. By reflecting on the past year and setting priorities for 2018, you can take control of your money.

Here are three suggestions to help you put your best financial foot forward this year.

1.     Look back to get ahead. Though it may not always be an enjoyable experience, looking back at your 2017 finances can help you move forward in a positive financial direction in the New Year. Identify your successes, find patterns and see how you can replicate those in 2018. If you discover any budget missteps, don’t dwell on them. Instead, ask yourself what you could have done to have avoided them all together. If there are any problem areas that could potentially come up again this year, try to avoid those pitfalls by better preparation. You can use these resources to help with money management and planning. The linked educational portal has information and calculators you can use to help you understand things like how to build an emergency fund, how much you can afford towards a car or home, or how long it will take you to pay off a credit card balance. 

2.     Seize opportunities to spend smarter. Analyze what you spend your money on. It is beneficial to create a spending plan to help you understand where you currently stand and to chart a course for the future. It is also helpful to take a look at how you make your purchases. You can get the most out of your everyday spending by taking advantage of smaller, established financial authorities that offer rewards and bonus opportunities on smart spending solutions. Arvest Flex Rewards™ Credit Cards offer up to a $75 bonus for new credit card accounts from now until June 30. In addition, during the months of March and April, card users can earn three times rewards points on gas and travel purchases. Rewards points can ultimately be redeemed for cash back, statement credits, travel, gift cards and more. You can apply online. Remember to be responsible when using your credit cards—paying off the balance each month will build a strong credit history.  

3.     Plan for big expenses. Don’t let big purchases sneak up on you this year. For instance, if you know your family wants to take a vacation this year, start planning now. Timing is important; plan your trip around airline sales or hotel deals to see a huge difference in your wallet. Some websites, like airfarewatchdog.com,* allow you to sign up for alerts when tickets to your desired destination go on sale. You can also use your credit card rewards points to help you pay for your travel expenses, baggage fees and more. 

The New Year is a perfect time to get serious about your finances and set a positive pace for smart spending and saving.

The views of this article are for general information use only. Please contact and speak with a subject expert or your banker when specific advice is needed.

Links marked with * go to a third-party site not operated or endorsed by Arvest Bank, an FDIC-insured institution. 

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