Are you turning 30 soon? Aside from personal goals, it’s important to establish financials goals to reach before the big three-O. Getting a firm grip on these financial goals before you turn 30 will make you more financially prepared for the bigger challenges in life that await you in your next decade.
1. Pay off your credit cards and student loans.
It’s best if you do not carry significant credit on your credit cards, but if you do, now’s the time to pay off your debt. This also applies to student loans. By the time you turn 30, you’ll likely be facing bigger financial responsibilities, such as a mortgage and investments.
2. Increase your retirement contributions.
Hopefully, you began saving for your retirement when you started your professional career after college. If you didn’t, open a 401(k) or IRA immediately. If you’ve already been saving money for retirement, take a look at your contributions and determine how much more money you can put in on a monthly basis. It’s time to get serious about saving for your future.
3. Create a will.
As you get older, it becomes increasingly important to plan for the unexpected – especially if you are starting a family. Draft a will, and make provisions for what happens if you or your partner became ill, injured or incapacitated in any other way. Also, make sure trusted friends or family members know where they can find this information in case of an emergency.
4. Review your insurance policies.
Gone are the days of living in a college apartment – it’s time to protect what you have. Make sure your home/rental, auto and health are adequately covered. Consider the possible catastrophes that could occur, and plan for disability, accident and other unexpected expenses. Also, don’t be afraid to shop around – just as long as you don’t sacrifice coverage.
5. Start an emergency fund.
Every 20-something should have at least six month’s worth of their monthly expenses saved in an emergency fund. This will ensure you have enough budget on hand in case an emergency arises. In other words, you won’t have to max out your credit cards even if you lose your job, get hospitalized or you were evicted from your home.
6. Establish good credit.
Don’t wait until you need to borrow money for a house or another large investment to establish good credit. Banks and credit card companies need to see your capability to repay credit and that’s the only way they’ll approve you for a loan. Review and check your credit report, and start establishing your credit history as quickly as possible.
About the author: Barb Finney is Senior Vice President, Market President/Regional Manager at MidWestOne Bank. She works in the retail department, specializing in checking and savings accounts, consumer loans, auto loans and home equity loans.
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