Whether you are young and starting your own life as an adult or in mid-life and realizing that you are behind in getting started towards your financial planning savings goals, it may be hard to know how to begin. No matter where you are now, it’s time to take steps towards setting and achieving your financial goals.
Determine your top financial goals. Maybe you need to start saving, period. Then there is college for the kids and retirement someday (?)
Prioritize your main goals. Top priority is building emergency reserves – at least 3 – 6 months of monthly expense needs is recommended. Next, balance retirement and education savings, keeping in mind that loans are available for education costs, but there are no loans for retirement.
Begin your saving by paying yourself first. Budget an amount to set aside in savings, as if your savings account is someone you owe, until your savings reserve is built up to your goal.
- Next, begin contributing at least a minimal amount to your employer retirement plan. Start by contributing enough to receive any employer match that might be available, and then slowly increase your contribution percentage over time.
- Education saving can begin by investing monetary gifts received for birthdays and other holidays into 529 college education accounts for your children. As cash flow allows, budget in a set amount monthly to add to the 529 accounts.
No matter what your current place in life, it’s the right time to start saving to meet your financial planning goals. Contact a Certified Financial Planner™ to help you come up with a plan to get you to the starting line and off to the races!
Sandra Adams, CFP® is a Financial Planner at Center for Financial Planning, Inc. Sandy specializes in Elder Care Financial Planning and is a frequent speaker on related topics. In 2012 and 2013, Sandy was named to the Five Star Wealth Managers list in Detroit Hour magazine. In addition to her frequent contributions to Money Centered, she is regularly quoted in national media publications such as The Wall Street Journal, Research Magazine and Journal of Financial Planning.
Five Star Award is based on advisor being credentialed as an investment advisory representative (IAR), a FINRA registered representative, a CPA or a licensed attorney, including education and professional designations, actively employed in the industry for five years, favorable regulatory and complaint history review, fulfillment of firm review based on internal firm standards, accepting new clients, one- and five-year client retention rates, non-institutional discretionary and/or non-discretionary client assets administered, number of client households served.
Any information is not a complete summary or statement of all available data necessary for making an investment decision and does not constitute a recommendation. Any opinions are those of Center for Financial Planning, Inc., and not necessarily those of RJFS or Raymond James.