2016 Young and Thrifty Personal Finance Resolutions

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Just like for the 2015 Personal Finance Goals that I set out to achieve, I will create a list of the 2016 personal finance goals.  Most of them are the same or similar with the added exception of increasing my dividend income.  After seeing my boyfriend's passive dividend income I am motivated to increase my passive dividend income once again.  I'm not sure if I want to increase my net worth by $35,000 again, to be honest that was very difficult, but it did push me to re-evaluate each purchase I had because as the year passed, I found myself getting more and more anxious as to whether or not I would make the goal.

So without further delay, here are my 2016 Personal Finance Resolutions:

Max out Tax Free Savings Account

Since the Liberal government rolled back the TFSA contribution room to $5500, accomplishing this goal will be easier.  It is so confusing to keep track of the TFSA limits, that the Canadian government provided a handy chart outlining the changes over the years since its inception in 2009.  I anticipate that this goal will be easy to achieve because all it takes is me moving some money from my cash stores into the TFSA account.  My TFSA account has taken a beating (thanks to Husky among other things in the Toronto Stock Exchange), but Keep Calm and Carry On.  So next year, the maximum allowable limit in the TFSA were one to never invest is $46,500.  With my added $5500, My TFSA will be roughly sitting at $53,000 provided the stock market stays relatively stable.

Max out RRSP

Again, this is easy to accomplish because I have a defined benefit pension and maximum RRSP contribution is quite low.  With the RRSP, I will just be adding US and International exchange traded funds, but I will likely need to put additional US/International contributions into my non-registered account (and hence get taxed) because my RRSP is about as slim as you can get it in terms of US/Int'l focus.

Increase Net Worth to $420,000

As mentioned above, this one was a tough one to complete, especially with the stock market because so iffy for 2015.  Even though it really sucked to try and achieve this goal in 2015, it did push me to really work hard and limit any unnecessary spending in 2015.  So I will continue with this one.  So, I'll aim to increase my net worth to $420,000 or $450,000 if I include my defined benefit pension.

Read Four Financial Books

Last year, I set out to read four financial books.  I would like to continue that for this year, to read at least four financial books.

So far, on the reading list is:

  • Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life, by Alice Shroeder
  • Beating the Street, by Peter Lynch

Any other recommendations?

Spend a Set Amount on Travel

Last year, I set out a maximum amount that I would spend on travel.  It was $5000.  I'll keep it the same for 2016.  So far, for 2016 I am going to Omaha (the ticket alone was $700 it was kind of ridiculous), on an Alaskan cruise, and possibly Hawaii again.  Hopefully I will be able to add another trip in there.  Even though it is a lot by any one's standards, I was still able to go on a number of trips throughout the year and kept under budget by $100 or so.

Continue Alternate Month Shopping Ban

Again, I liked having the alternate month shopping ban, I feel that it really reduced my sense of consumerism, which wasn't very high in the first place anyway, but it still helped.  Starting in January 2016 I will not be buying any additional things for myself (such as clothing, Starbucks coffees, chocolate) on an alternate month basis.  Last year, all my trips coincided on the months that I did not have a shopping ban, so that was nice.  Hopefully I will be lucky again this year, however, I doubt I'll be doing much shopping with the US dollar so low.

Increase Dividend Income

My dividends took a massive hit from $5300 to $4000.  My goal for 2016 is to hit $6000 of passive dividend income by the end of the year. Basically I would probably need to invest about $45,000 (at least) to get at the $6000 mark if I assume that I can get a 4% average dividend income return on the $45,000 invested.  Of course, I won't do this at the expense of chasing dividends, and would be happy with a growth in my portfolio even if I don't hit the $6000 target.

Readers, what are your 2016 Personal Finance Resolutions?

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Young is a writer and former owner of Young and Thrifty and the main "twitter' behind Young and Thrifty's twitter account. She lives in Vancouver, BC and enjoys long walks on the beach, spending time with her anxious dog, and finding good deals. If you like what you read, consider signing up for email updates.

3 Comments

  1. Bindu on January 7, 2016 at 12:17 pm

    Thanks for sharing your resolutions. My resolution is to add more to my TFSA. I have to maximise my RRSP too. Since my taxes are not taken directly from my paycheck, I have to find a method to save it automatically this year. Thinking about starting a self directed RRSP this year.



  2. Leigh on January 17, 2016 at 1:21 am

    I did a ton of clothes shopping in 2015 and overhauled most of my closet. I bought the StyleBook app to help me track the cost per wear metrics of my closet overhaul to help keep me on track and help me realize that I have plenty of clothes. I like your alternate month shopping ban idea. I’m trying the “clothing needs list” idea for me.

    I’m not sure if we’ll take a big trip this year as I’m in grad school now! (Still working for now…)

    My 2016 goals include maxing out all of my retirement accounts and then saving another $40,000 in cash, which should get my “taxable assets” to be worth more than my mortgage!!! I’m super excited for that day to come soon! Another exciting metric that I’m hoping to surpass in 2016 is for 4% of my investments to cover all of my non-mortgage fixed expenses. So long as the market doesn’t dive too much, I’ll meet that! 😀

    Good luck with your 2016 goals, Young! Here’s to a wealthful 2016 🙂



  3. Young on January 17, 2016 at 11:39 pm

    @Leigh- Amazing goals Leigh! You’re going to be fine. Congrats on grad school- your man is very lucky to have you! Good luck on your goals too Leigh!



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