Staying physically fit is not always easy, but there are a lot of resources that you can turn to in order to get started. There are fitness magazines, apps to track how many calories you are burning and, of course, your doctor is there to help you guide you.
But what about staying financially fit? This, too, can add value to our overall well-being, yet the information is not always at our fingertips. Because your 30s can bring about some pretty pivotal changes in your life, here are some tips and advice that can help set you up for financial success.
Bulk up your emergency savings fund. The general rule of thumb is to work towards having six months of take-home pay in your emergency account. This will help offset some of those unexpected costs without breaking your bank or using your credit cards unnecessarily.
Max out your 401(k). You should contribute at least as much as is needed to fully take advantage of your company’s match. You won’t miss it from your paycheck, but it will make a difference in 30 years when it’s time to retire.
Purchase disability and life insurance. It’s important that you protect yourself and your family from the unexpected. Look into a term life policy for both you and your spouse. And while disability insurance is often an afterthought, you are more likely to file a claim on a disability policy than a life insurance policy. Make sure you have enough disability coverage through your employer; otherwise, look to an outside provider.
Cut your debt – It is time to reduce your debt load. If you have credit cards, student loans or medical bills, create a plan to get out of debt. If you are only making minimum payments on a credit card, for example, you are paying more toward interest than actually paying down your debt. Review your current minimum monthly payment and try adding $25-$100 to it. Over time, these increased payments could save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars in interest payments. If you don’t have credit card debt, this strategy could easily apply to paying down car, student or home loans. A smart way to plan larger payments is to watch what you spend every month. Track your outgoing expenses for a month and see where you can cut corners to afford to pay more on the debt you owe.
Start investing in your financial future. Investing in your 30s is important because you can start to frame your medium and long-term financial goals and identify what you’ll need to do to achieve them. Many things will change as you progress in life, but the sooner you start pursuing your goals, the better.
Sometimes meeting with a personal trainer one-on-one will help get you motivated. Get in touch if you would like a financial pep talk or a sit-down meeting. We can help.