Finances can be one of the top stressors in your family. They can impact every aspect of your life, either positively or negatively. If you’re looking to improve your family’s finances this year, there are many ways to do so. Whether it is paying off debt or making your home more energy efficient, every step will have an impact on your financial health. Here are five tips to get you started on improving your family’s finances.

Start a Budget

If you don’t already have a monthly budget, make one. A budget shows you exactly how much money you have coming in, how much you need to spend on your bills, and how much is leftover. Without a budget, you can’t know where you stand with your finances. So take some time to consider your regular expenses. Is there a way to make your home more energy efficient? Can you afford everything you buy? If not, where can you make some cuts? 6.97 million Americans used professional waxing services four or more times within six months in 2019. If you’re one of them, could you cut back to save money? By having all of this information available to you, you can start making better financial decisions for your family.

Improve Your Home Insulation

If you need to improve your family’s finances, investing in good home insulation and HVAC maintenance is a good place to start. Even though you’re spending money upfront, these steps can save you 30% on your utility bills. By making your home more energy efficient, you’ll ultimately save much more money than you spent on maintenance.

Set Financial Goals

If you have a solid goal, you’re much more likely to reach it than if you have a vague idea of what you want. So take some time to set financial goals for the year. You might want to pay off a certain amount of debt. Or maybe you’re saving up for an important purchase. Write down your goals and set up a tracking system to help you determine your progress. By having the tracker in front of you and the goal in mind, you’ll be more motivated to work hard and achieve better financial health.

Pay Your Taxes Correctly

No matter what your financial situation is, you need to pay your taxes. And you need to do so correctly. In 2020, the IRS estimated that Americans owed more than $114 million in back taxes, penalties, and interest. If you find yourself in a situation where you owe money to the IRS, you can end up in legal or financial trouble. Do your best to avoid it by paying your taxes accurately. And if you are in that situation, work with the IRS to get out of it as soon as possible.

Start a Side Hustle

If you need to earn a little more money to achieve your financial goals, consider starting a side hustle. A side hustle is work that you do outside of your full-time job. It can be your own business or it can be gig work. Either way, it is a way to earn more money during your downtime. If you want a simple side hustle, look into gig work like food delivery. Or you can set up a small business out of your home. While a side hustle does mean you’re expending more energy and working more hours, it will also improve your family’s finances this year.

If you need to improve your family’s finances this year, start with these five steps. They will help you reduce your spending and make a little more money while staying out of legal trouble. If you apply them, it will make a difference to your financial health.