Your education may not always bring you the best job, your job may not last forever, and your investments could become history in a matter of days. Life is unpredictable, but you could always use certain resources to make things work for you.
The basics of any financial portfolio include the understanding of its three pillars – loans, savings, and investments. If you lack in savings and investments, you could end up with a low retirement income. If you handle your loans poorly, your entire financial record could be ruined for a long time. Here is how you can maintain a balance between the three through different stages of your life.
Young adult/college freshman
This is the time when you are least concerned about money – whether earning or spending. You may want to focus more on ideas, pizzas and that cool place you have to go and visit with your friends. As you are likely not earning yet, investments are quite possibly beyond your reach. However, loans and savings still are still an option for you. As a college student, try to save as much of your allowance as you can. After graduation, make sure you are making efforts to find a job as soon as possible to avoid having outstanding debt at a later stage in your life.
As soon as you have finished college and started working, your focus may shift to splurges, partying and traveling. While there is nothing wrong with spending some money and enjoying yourself, you definitely need to balance the three pillars of your financial life. Many people go wrong here and end up with a life full of debt and regrets.
As a working graduate, you may have also taken out a loan to fund a new car. You may also find yourself needing a small amount of credit for emergencies and unexpected costs. Make sure you get this money from a trusted credit service provider like Mr Lender as opposed to an illegitimate one who will charge far more than necessary. By now, you should be able to save at least 20% of your income. If you earn 1000 GBP, at least 200 GBP should be your savings. Of these, try and invest as least 150 GBP to build your long-term savings. With the remaining 800 GBP, find a great apartment to live in, make payments towards any existing loans and enjoy yourself with the rest.
As you approach 30 you may be thinking more about buying a home if you haven’t already done so. If you want to start a family, already have one or just want to own a large asset, go for a mortgage and buy a house. The loans usually have very low rates of interest and will be repaid over 20 to 30 years. To avoid any additional monthly expenses, try and keep the number of outstanding loans you have to a minimum. Working towards building your income will also in turn increase your savings as well as investments.
If calculated effectively, you should be able to allocate more of your income towards savings and investments as you get older as opposed to making payments towards loans. Whether it is buying a home, a car or investing, the earlier you start, the more advantages you could receive. Make sure that you plan your finances properly before taking any drastic steps.