Living through your 30’s can be a challenging time financially. It’s often the time when “big moves” happen in life: marriage, having kids, buying a home, career development etc. It’s a time to be enjoyed, and it’s also a time to be careful financially! You don’t want to spend your 40’s and 50’s trying to make up for a lost decade… Here are a few ideas to help you avoid that very situation happening.
Live off your income only
Living an appropriate lifestyle is crucial to financial stability. Once you start living beyond your means, credit card bills start racking up and you’re on a downward spiral. And when this spiral starts, it’s very hard to break out of it. The solution is to match your lifestyle to your income. If that means less nights out or luxury purchases, well that’s the way it has to be!
Don’t blow your bonuses!
While not suggesting for one minute that you should live a miserable existence with no luxuries whatsoever in your 30’s, bonuses are not an opportunity to just fritter away cash! Yes you and your family deserve treats, and bonuses might play a role in these. However getting a bonus is also an opportunity to put a few euros away for a rainy day, whether that’s a war chest from which you’ll educate your children or indeed providing a boost to your retirement planning. Money saved now will make a huge difference in the future, as the impact of time and compound interest will turbo-charge your retirement fund.
Know your spending
Financial Brokers observe that one of the main challenges faced by clients in their 30’s is actually knowing where their money is going. Having a family budget is a critical element of personal financial planning. To do this effectively, you need to actually track every cent spent over a period of one to two months. You’ll be amazed where money is being spent that you’re hardly even aware of. Is there an alternative to buying all those coffees every day? Can you cut down on taxi journeys and use public transport? Could your family shopping methods change, to feed the family in a more cost effective (and possibly healthier) way?
Focus on your career
Your 30’s are the time when significant career moves can happen. Are there opportunities for you to bring your career to the next level by undertaking further study or indeed by putting your hand up for more work? After all, your career is the driver of your income and increasing your income makes a lot of these challenges much easier to face.
Debt is the enemy of savings
Of course you need a mortgage if you want to buy a house. But make sure you can afford your repayments. And keep that credit card in check! Servicing debt is a killer when trying to save money so beware of taking on debt that you cannot afford.
Above all, enjoy your 30’s! They are halcyon years, a time of great fun and opportunity. Live your life and set yourself up well for your later years too.