As you get into your 30s, you’ll realize that they’re a crucial decade of your life. You may be past the point where you don’t know what to do but you can still find ways to be proactive with your money.
Here are money mistakes you should learn to avoid in your 30s:
1. NOT HAVING AN EMERGENCY FUND
It is important to have an emergency fund to avoid debt in later life. Ideally, this account should cover three to six months of your essential expenses so you can cover any unexpected events such as losing your job or costly medical issues. It is highly suggested to put your emergency fund in a saving account so you can access it immediately and do not need to worry about a downturn in the markets affecting how much money you have.
2. BEING UNDERINSURED
Most people don’t like to buy insurance because it means paying for something that they hope to never happen/use. However, the consequences of being uninsured are so large that they can wipe you out financially. One accident on the job or medical emergency can change your financial structure just in the blink of an eye.
The types of insurance that are highly recommended are:
– Term life insurance
– Health insurance
– Disability insurance
– Renter’s insurance
3. MAKING MINIMUM PAYMENTS ON HIGH-INTEREST DEBT
If you have high-interest personal loans or credit card debt, it is suggested to pay them down as aggressively as possible before you focus on a low-interest loan or a mortgage. The faster you can pay those high-interest loans off, the more money you can put towards other financial goals that become increasingly important as you progress in your 30s.
4. BUYING TOO MUCH PROPERTY/HOUSE
Home/property ownership is gratifying and can lead to wealth creation. However, it is not guaranteed. You have to make sure that your housing budget includes room for things like unexpected repairs, maintenance, and potential changes to your future income if you start a family.
5. NOT AGGRESSIVELY SAVING FOR RETIREMENT
Retirement can seem far away when you are in your 30s. But every dollar you save for retirement now will be 10 to 20 extra years to accumulate compound interest than money saved in your 40s and 50s. You can set up an IRA (Individual Retirement Account) that will automatically move money from your checking account on payday.
6. SAVING FOR YOUR KIDS BEFORE SAVING FOR YOURSELF
When you become a parent, it is natural to want to put your kids’ needs in front of your own. However, saving for your children’s college education before you save for your own retirement is a terrible mistake. There are many ways to pay for college such as scholarships or applying to less expensive institutions but there is no way to pay for retirement other than saving.