As you enter your 30s, it is time to get serious about financial planning. This is a decade where you need to start paying attention to the financial choices that you are making. Here are some tips.
1. Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck
First, you need to stop living paycheck to paycheck. Sit down and evaluate your budget period to figure out if there is anywhere that you can cut costs.
That may mean getting rid of your streaming subscription services or downgrading to a smaller cell phone plan. This might mean selling your car and purchasing a vehicle you can afford to buy with cash. Or perhaps that means moving into a less expensive apartment.
Find ways, big and small, to cut your expenses so you can start saving and building your wealth.
2. Create That Cushion
Second, it is time to start building that emergency fund. Your first goal should be to build an emergency fund that has enough money in it to pay for all your expenses for one month.
Your second goal should be to build an emergency fund that has at least three months' worth of expenses. Once you have three months' worth of expenses saved up, you should consider moving that money into high yield savings account so you can earn interest on your emergency fund.
Ideally, by the time you hit 40, you will have an entire year saved up in your emergency fund.
3. Start Contributing to a Retirement Fund
Third, it is time to start contributing to a retirement fund.
If your job offers a retirement fund, start making small monthly contributions to that retirement fund. If your job will match what you put in your retirement fund, be sure to take full advantage of that opportunity.
Even if your job doesn't offer a retirement fund, you can still put your money into a tax-free capital IRA. The key is to start saving as early as you can, as your money will grow over time.
4. Invest Outside of Your Retirement Fund
Fourth, your investments should not just be focused on your retirement fund. You should also invest some money outside of your retirement account into a mutual fund. Look for a low-cost mutual fund that charges less than 1 percent percent each year and add a little money each month to your mutual fund.
5. Be Smart With Debt
Finally, be smart with debt. Avoid "bad" debt, such as credit card debt. Having an emergency fund should help you avoid having to take out payday loans. When purchasing a car, do so with cash. If you go into that, only do so for things that will increase in value, such as real estate or education that will help you make more money.
As you enter your 30s, it is time to get serious about your relationship with money. Stop living paycheck to paycheck and start saving and investing. Be smart about debt, avoid bad lending situations, and only acquire debt if it will ultimately help you build wealth.
For more information, contact a financial planning service.