Here Are Americans' Top 3 Financial Resolutions

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  • The start of the year is a great time to work toward improving your financial picture.
  • You may want to take on some of the more popular resolutions among Americans.
  • Many Americans hope to spend less, save more, and pay off debt in 2023.

Did any of these make your list?

If you've ever failed at a New Year's resolution, you're definitely not alone. I mean, let's be real -- how many times did you really use the gym membership you signed up for this past January?

But while New Year's resolutions aren't always easy to keep, they're worth making nonetheless. This especially applies to financial matters.

Unfortunately, 2022 was a tough year for a lot of people. Living costs were up in a very big way, and a lot of people experienced personal setbacks because of that, such as having to hit pause on retirement plan contributions and racking up credit card debt.

If you're eager to see your financial picture improve in 2023, then it pays to take certain steps to make that happen. In fact, you may want to copy the most popular financial resolutions cited in a recent Fidelity study, which are as follows.

1. Save more money

Whether you're talking about a regular savings account, a 401(k), or an IRA, it's a good thing to try to sock away more money in 2023 -- especially if you fell behind in 2022. Fidelity reports that 39% of people list saving more money as a top resolution.

But if you're serious about tackling that goal, don't just leave things to chance. Instead, put your savings on autopilot.

If you're loading to pump more money into your savings account, arrange for an automatic transfer so that some of your earnings leave your checking account and land right in your savings before you can touch them. You can arrange for the same setup with many IRA accounts, too. And if you have a 401(k) through your employer, pretty much the only way to fund your plan is through payroll deductions, so that should make the process seamless as well.

2. Pay down debt

For 32% of people, paying off debt is a big goal for 2023. But it pays to tackle that task efficiently. So first, see what types of debt you have. Something like a credit card balance should pretty much always take priority over a personal loan or auto loan, since credit cards are notorious for charging loads of interest.

Also, see if your debt is worth consolidating. If you're carrying balances on three or four different cards, it could pay to consolidate via a balance transfer or personal loan. Doing so might lower the interest rate on your debt, all the while leaving you with one monthly payment to manage, rather than many.

3. Spend less money

A good 28% of Americans want to shrink their spending in 2023. If you're serious about doing the same, first, get your household on board. You'll need to have everyone working together to achieve that particular goal.

Next, slash expenses in your budget that aren't doing much to enhance your quality of life. If you can take or leave a given streaming service or subscription, hit the cancel button.

Finally, take impulse buys off the table by making shopping lists before you hit the store and leaving your credit cards at home. You'll lose out on earning rewards, but you might gain a lot in the form of freeing up money for other important purposes.

All of these resolutions are worth striving for in 2023. And remember, even if you've struggled to keep up with these types of pledges before, you never know what the new year will bring, so it's worth giving these goals a shot.

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