We know that summer is a busy time for many of you. But we hope you’ll take a minute to do a quick check-in on your money situation. How are you doing? Are you meeting your goals? Even if you don’t have any goals, it’s never too late to adopt some good habits. This mind-set is especially important now that the cost of living has been rising.

Time to track your ins and outs: Do you know what’s coming in and what’s going out? If you can’t answer these questions immediately, you likely aren’t budgeting. Make a simple budget by listing your income and expenses. If you see more going out than in, figure out where you can make some cuts. The best thing about this exercise is that it doesn’t have to look pretty. It just needs to be something that you can live by. One way to stay honest is to stick it to the fridge so you can easily keep track of how you’re doing each month.

Slash your debt: Include a line in your budget for debt reduction and stick to it. If a part of your debt comes from credit card purchases, aim to pay it off every month and avoid making new charges.

Save it! If your new budget has freed up some cash, use this opportunity to start saving. Put a bit aside into your RRSP and an emergency savings account. If the amount is the same, create an automatic transfer between your accounts. This is a great way to make regular savings a habit.

If you would like more tips and tricks on managing your money, visit Canada Life’s SmartPathNow.com website.