10 EZ Financial New Year’s Resolutions



My Sunday Washington Post Business column is out. This morning, I discuss ten easy to follow New Year’s resolutions that will make your finances better.

The print version had the charming headline Get smart!: 10 financial resolutions you can actually keep.

Here’s an excerpt from the column:

“It’s that time of year, when many people resolve to be better: Gotta lose 20 pounds, stop smoking, start exercising. Human nature is such that come January, there will be a 20-minute wait for the elliptical machines in the gym . . . and by mid-February, that wait will drop to zero minutes.

Resolutions are usually a terrible way to effect change. Changing habits involves changing your lifestyle, and that requires a deep commitment that most of us lack.

If you’ve resolved to get your financial life in order, I offer 10 important and easy-to-do steps. None is groundbreaking, but they are all too easily overlooked. If you do all 10, I guarantee that you will be better organized and more aware of your finances. That will lead to better decision-making and lower levels of economic stress.”

Following that are the 10 numbered resolutions, along with a brief explanation of each.

Note: I wrote this to be simple, accessible and easy to follow. I am sure there will be some exceptions to each of these points, so think of them as general principles.


10 financial resolutions you can actually keep
Barry Ritholtz
Washington Post, December 29 2013

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