A Q& A with Diana Holmes, Chase Community Manager

Sponsored by JPMorgan Chase Co.

Chase Community Manager Diana Holmes

It’s still early in the New Year, and that means the goals we may have set for ourselves to accomplish in 2023 are still fresh in our minds. Whether you’re prepping to buy a house, purchase a new car, or even start a new business, we talked to Diana Holmes about tips and resources that can help you stay focused and accomplish your financial goals with confidence this year.

Q: How can readers get started on the path to accomplishing their goals when we’re talking finances?

Diana: It’s really important to step back and think through what you want to accomplish. That makes it a lot easier to work backwards to outline the steps you’ll need to take to get there. Some people create vision boards to represent their end goals, and you can do the same thing when it comes to your finances. Make the most of the free resources available to you, often accessible at your fingertips through mobile apps and websites.

Q: Let’s look at some popular financial goals more specifically. If you want to buy a car this year, what are your suggestions?

Diana: If you’re in the market for a car, whether new or used, it’s critical to do your homework. Put in the effort upfront to determine what you need and want in a car before you start looking. Once you have a solid plan of what you’re looking for, shop around—that’ll help you understand what’s on the market and ensure you’re getting the best possible price. There are various ways to buy a car these days, so you want to weigh all of your options before signing on the dotted line. 

Q: What are some tips for those who may be hoping to start a business this year?

Diana: When planning to launch a business, it’s easy to get lost in the numbers. A big part of a new business’ success (and even survival) can come down to making sure it’s on solid footing. Get a clear picture about your start-up costs early on. It’s essential to identify your expenses, do the math, build up a cushion and plan ahead for the unexpected.

Q: Homeownership is a common goal for many – what should readers keep in mind if they want to make that dream a reality in 2023?

Diana: The single most important thing you can do to make the dream of homeownership a reality is to get educated. You want to understand what to expect during the home-buying process and have a good sense of what you can afford before you start to fall in love with those listings. 

During the process, it’s key to find professionals (like a real estate agent and mortgage lender) that you trust. They can help give you an edge in understanding the local market and any financial assistance that may be available. There are many lender-backed and local financial assistance programs out there for home buyers, even specific products and services that can help—do your research and see if you’re eligible. Homeownership is the largest financial undertaking for most Americans and a key to building generational wealth. It can provide a  base of security, as building home equity provides you with more financial options in the future. For instance, home equity can be used to pay off debt, increase savings, start a business or invest for the future.

Below are five first-time home buyer tips to help financially prepare you for buying and owning a home.

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