You probably have a good idea of how you want your money to work for you. What activities that fulfill you do you want to spend it on, with whom do you want to share it with and how will it need to serve you in the future. The more difficult part is devising a plan that will work for you now and in the future. One that is informed by your values and priorities. An important part of any plan is making sure that, year over, you are on track to achieve the longer-term goals you’ve set for yourself. Below is a checklist of key questions to ask yourself as you close out the year.

Retirement Savings:

-Are you fully funding your retirement accounts?

-Would you benefit from a Roth Conversion?

Employment Benefits:

-Are you maxing out your Health Savings Account?

-Have you used your Flexible Saving Account funds which will expire by year-end?


-Have you maxed out your deductible on your Health Insurance?

-Does your Auto and Home insurance maintain the proper coverage amounts that currently fit your needs?

Investment Management:

-Have you reviewed your asset allocation across all of your personal and retirement accounts. Market performance can cause you to drift from your originally intended goal. Does it still fit your risk tolerance?

-Are there tax opportunities for “harvesting”?

Charitable Giving:

-How are you handling your charitable gifting? Donating assets can provide a tax benefit and if done properly can benefit you by both reducing income as well as avoiding some capital gains tax.

Estate Planning:

-Are your primary and successor beneficiaries still reflective of your wishes?

-Might a gifting strategy benefit you and your loved ones?

Your Income Versus Your Expenses:

-Has your spending been in line with the budget you set for yourself?

-How are you doing with your emergency fund? Is it earning the best interest rate it can?

-Have you reviewed your credit report for the year?

The above is certainly not an all-inclusive list but it’s a start. Tax planning throughout the year is key and ensuring your year-over-year activities align with your overall long-term plan is essential. Being disciplined with your financial check-ins plays a crucial role in keeping you on track.