While it’s going to require a little bit of hard work and discipline, you too can paint a much brighter financial picture coming into 2018. In fact, it might actually be somewhat fun. Here’s how:
Know What Your Long-Term Mission Is
No matter if it’s buying a new car, saving up for law school, or even buying a new home, your long-term financial goals are going to be what drives a lot of your decisions. With a little discipline, these objectives are attainable within a few years, as long as you stick to your budget and have a nest set aside for the unexpected. Make an effort to establish a solid savings plan, as this will be a huge cursor to what guides you moving forward.
Create A Plan
Creating a plan is one of the most vital aspects of your financial picture. Not only will this list out your income and expenses, but additionally list out the things that you might be lacking in setting aside funds for. Additionally, nipping this in the bud beforehand will allow you to utilize other tools such as saving or investment apps, and will overall give you a much better piece of mind on your money.
Contribute To Your Passions
Perhaps one of the most underrated pieces of financial advice is to put money into your passions. While most people would advise to solely save, invest, or cut back, it’s important to spend money on yourself, especially if it provides a positive goal. For example, if you’ve always wanted to get into DJing, then going after equipment like the best audio interface and whatnot should take priority over other frivolous activities.
Don’t Forget to Budget Entertainment
As investing in your passions is a good quality to have, so is setting some money aside for entertainment. Whether that be electronics, going to the movies, or even taking weekend trips, this is part of what makes you happy and should be factored into your larger picture. Create a reasonable amount each month for this, and you might be surprised at how much you can actually afford.
Although it’s one of the most common pieces of advice in handling money, saving money is one of the most imperative practices you could follow. According to GoBankingRates, approximately 62% of Americans have less than $1,000 in their savings account. And if you find yourself in that category, it’s best to figure out how you can get started on a plan.
Depending on the amount of debt that you’re in, check and see if you can set aside 10-20% of your paycheck every month. Even just the smallest contribution can make a significant difference.
Investing Is A Must
In establishing a long-term savings plan for major purchases like a house or car, it’d be advantageous to start looking into investing your money in the market. As noted by CNBC, nearly 80% of millennials are currently not invested in stocks, which makes sense considering most people don’t see gains for at least five to ten years. However, when you do, it will be well worth the wait.
Pick Up A Side Hustle
If you find yourself in a position to need some extra income on top of what you’re making at work, then going after a side hustle is never a bad idea. According to Intuit, approximately 34 percent of Americans are involved in some sort of gig economy work, which with how ubiquitous Uber, Airbnb, and even Postmates makes perfect sense. And if you’re looking to get in on this action, look around to see what type of work you might have the time for, as well as what you want to gain out of it.
Cut Out The Excess
Although not fun, cutting back on excess spending is critical. This includes things we all know we’re guilty of, such as going out to eat too much or splurging a little too hard at the mall. While these aren’t always the things that completely ruins our financial picture, they definitely contribute and should be something to be mindful of moving forward.