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Special Report

Weekend Money Projects With Christine Benz

Use this summer series to cross some financial tasks off your list before fall.

It's summertime--a time for making memories with family, taking a much-needed vacation (or staycation), and getting outside while the getting is good. It's also the time for weekend projects. We've all used summer weekends to stain our decks, install new fire pits, and mulch our yards.

But summer is a good time to take on some basic money projects, too.

Why now? This time of year, most of us aren't knee-deep in the details of our finances. During the summer, we're not usually paying our taxes, funding IRAs, taking RMDs, conducting portfolios reviews/rebalancing, or maneuvering open enrollment. So why not take a little time to evaluate how we’re managing--or not managing--some larger money and financial issues before the busyness of fall? 

To that end, we've created this special report, Weekend Money Projects. Each weekend between now and Labor Day, I'll guide you through one must-do money task.

Here's what you can expect. Be sure to visit Morningstar.com each weekend. And before the days shorten and the leaves begin to turn, you'll have your money foundation all set.

June 22: Calculate Your Net Worth
June 29: Assess Cash Flows and Create a Budget
July 6: Quantify and Set Goals
July 13: Calibrate Your Target Savings Rate
July 20: Assess Your Insurance Needs
July 27: Set and Invest Your Emergency Fund
Aug. 3: How to Develop a Plan for Paying Down Debt
Aug. 10: Create an Investment Policy Statement
Aug. 17: Create a Master Directory
Aug. 24: Get Organized
Aug. 31: Tackle Estate-Planning Basics