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(WGHP) — Making your money goals a reality this year means starting simple and staying committed.

Tim Maurer, with Triad Financial Advisors, says you should monitor your budget on a weekly basis.

“If you don’t budget at all, you actually have no idea how much your gas bill has gone up for fueling your vehicle on a regular basis. You might not see areas where there is inflation or areas where you can cut,” Maurer said.

Paying off credit card debt can also give your finances a boost. You don’t have to eliminate your saving strategy to do it.

Maurer suggests contributing what you can to retirement and education plans while prioritizing paying down high-interest debt first.

One essential move to make is adjusting your spending behaviors.

“I never recommend people take the step of consolidating or transferring balances until you know the bleeding has stopped. In other words, if you’re still accruing debt, you still have a problem. So you’re just going to find yourself with that problem reborn in the future,” Maurer said.

If your focus is on growing your money, investing is a smart move.

The financial advisor suggests starting small and learning where your money is going.

For families who want to invest in their children’s education, opening a 529 savings plan makes sense.

Maurer encourages couples to be realistic about what they are able and willing to put into the account.

If you can only contribute a small amount, invite family to give on holidays or special occasions.

If you’re looking forward to working less in 2022, Maurer says you should revisit your portfolio so your money works for you.

It is also important to realize retirement will be an emotional transition.

“Acknowledge the fact that this is going to be a major life change. For that reason I often recommend that people phase into retirement,” Maurer said. “Begin with some part-time work or at least line up some awesome volunteer opportunities with nonprofits that meant a great deal to you.”

If you need help navigating your fiscal future, financial advisors offer an objective look at your behaviors toward money so you can reap the biggest rewards.

“I have my own financial advisor. That’s because I know that personal finance is more personal than it is finance. I know that I have my own blind spots much in the same way that all of us have blind spots,” Maurer said.

He has shared some of his advice for free on his website.

You can find more about services offered through Triad Financial Advisors