It’s that time of the year – 2016 is waning, and 2017 is right around the corner. And as always, money and financial planning are right up there on people’s lists of New Year’s goals. In fact, “Save more, spend less,” is the #1 new year’s resolution for 2017.
Despite the unknowns of what this new year and new administration may bring us, Americans seem optimistic about their financial futures in 2017. One study has shown that one in three is open to seeking financial advice, and financial services is listed as the top profession people would use if they could do so for free.
The good news is, if you’re one of the hundreds of thousands vowing to whip your personal finances into better shape with a new 2017 financial plan, you don’t have to go about it alone. Personal Capital’s financial software and free tools are already helping over 1.3 million people track over $270 billion in assets. Here’s how to use our tools to give you a comprehensive look at your finances and help you develop a long-term financial strategy to achieve whatever your goals for 2017 and beyond may be:
Calculate your net worth
They say knowledge is power. Having a full view of your net worth – what’s coming in, what’s going out – from one source means you can easily be more strategic about how to grow your wealth. With our award-winning dashboard, you can link all of your investing, retirement and bank accounts (including credit accounts), which gives you a complete picture of your net worth. Our dashboard automates this calculation and updates every time you log in, whether you’re on your desktop, phone or tablet. You can use this tool to set monthly spending goals, easily see all of your financial accounts in one place, and track your overall portfolio performance.
Discover hidden fees
If you work with a broker, you may be aware that you’re paying an advisory fee, but do you know what you might be paying in other hidden fees? Oftentimes these fees are buried in the fine print, including account opening fees, service and maintenance fees, as well as trade fees. Added up, these fees could potentially be costing you hundreds of thousands of dollars in savings lost over a lifetime. With our Fee Analyzer, you can not only analyze the fees associated with your holdings, but also see how they impact your retirement savings and project how these fees may add up to years off of your retirement.
Review investment performance
Do you know how your current asset allocation stacks up against an optimal portfolio allocation based on your goals? You could be leaving money on the table if you’re not properly allocated. The good news is, you don’t need to be a Wall Street expert to understand what you might do better to improve your investment strategy. Our Investment Checkup tool allows you to build a customized plan based on your current holdings and goals by reviewing the risk in your portfolio and establishing a benchmark for your investments. You can then receive an investment strategy that is an optimal blend of asset classes to achieve a given risk-adjusted return.
Make a retirement plan
When you dream of retirement, what does that look like for you? Are you cruising the Mediterranean in a yacht with an umbrella-garnished drink in your hand? Or are you surrounded by your family in your dream home, secure in the knowledge they’ll be financially taken care of after you’re gone? Regardless of what retirement looks like for you, do you know how – and when – you’re going to get there? Enter our Retirement Planner, which helps you build, manage and forecast your retirement plan by using actual financial data you’ve linked to the Personal Capital dashboard. You can see how prepared your are for retirement based on your target retirement date, while anticipating the big expenses, like college planning or buying a home. You can then use a data-driven retirement plan to determine the monthly spending you can afford and see what adjustments you need to make to make sure you’re ready for that retirement you’ve dreamed of.