The New Year is typically a time to introspect and set goals, whether you want to pick up a new skill or be more active.
If financial wellness is on your mind, then your bank accounts are a great place to start. Basic Checking and Savings accounts are the foundation of money management, and it’s a good idea to fine- tune or even consider an overhaul so that they work for you in the best possible way this year.
A good way to begin that process is to review your beneficiaries on all your existing accounts. Is the information on your beneficiaries up to date to ensure the proceeds of all your accounts are consistent with your wishes, your will, and other documents?
As you review all your accounts, be sure to identify any dormant or inactive accounts. These are typically accounts that have not had a deposit or a withdrawal in over a year. The first of the year is a good time to review all your accounts to ensure that none of them have gone dormant.
Director of Deposit Operations
This is also a good time to schedule an appointment to visit with a banker about getting a holistic review of your entire relationship and discuss your financial needs for this year. Bankers can ensure that you are availing of the best products to fit your current and future needs and perhaps consolidate accounts to avoid unnecessary fees and charges.
One of the fundamentals of a sound financial plan is ensuring you have an emergency fund to prepare for unexpected but necessary expenses without having to sell more volatile investments. This fund is typically three to six months’ worth of essential living expenses set aside in a savings account. You can easily start by setting up automatic transfers into a dedicated savings account to build your emergency fund.
Many banking services are now available through mobile apps and desktop websites, including bill pay, money transfers, check deposits, and customer service. If you are not already accessing these services, now’s the time to get set up with these convenient options.
To help prevent fraud, secure all the user IDs and Passwords you use to access your bank information. There are various apps like LastPass and Dashlane to help you keep this information secure. It’s a good practice to set reminders on your calendar to change your passwords regularly. Importantly, never provide your credentials to anyone calling you to obtain that information with the pretense of being your bank.
- Always stay vigilant when you receive requests from your vendors for new payment methods. Ensure and verify that the request is coming from your authorized contact and not an imposter!
- As part of housekeeping for the new year, it’s s a good practice to review who has access to your business accounts. Does everyone that currently has access, have the correct level of access to run your business efficiently and safely?
- Always utilize security alerts or biometrics when accessing your digital banking, as this provides an additional layer of security to your accounts.
In closing, whether you are a consumer or a business, our goal at NDBT is to partner with you and guide you in reaching your financial goals for 2023! Come visit us at NDBT.com or in person at any of our five banking centers, we are glad to be of assistance to you!