Remember when you were in college, when you were frugal and trying to balance books, tuition and happy hours? Now fast forward past graduation, your first job and a couple of raises. Are you still the frugal undergrad you once were? Most of my clients love spending their new found income because they find it greatly exceeds their bills, but your 20's and early 30's are actually the best time to save and get ahead in life. There is no better time than now to create a financial plan.
Most of us never learned personal finance, so many of my wealth building clients come to me with nothing more than a few bank accounts, a small 401k, and maybe an IRA; however, this is a great start to a solid financial plan. One of the biggest misconceptions is that having a financial plan is unnecessary until you have a major life event, such as a having a child or getting married. However, everyone should have their financial plan established in their early 20s. Yes, your financial plan will evolve as you evolve, but the biggest asset you have is time. It is important to have a plan in place so that when life changes do happen, you know how to react to them. You must remember Rome was not built overnight.
A comprehensive financial plan for individuals in their 20s and 30s begins with an emergency fund in a savings account at the bank. Once that is established, you need to make sure you are saving for retirement. I know the 30-40 years until retirement seems like a very long time away. We must not, however, underestimate the speed of time and how we can use it in our favor. Most of my clients take advantage of their work sponsored retirement plan (401k or 403b) and also maximize their annual IRA contribution. Once those goals are satisfied, a conservatively invested liquid account is a must. The majority of these accounts are specifically designed to save for a down payment of a home. But wait, there is one more account and I am sure you were not thinking about it: life insurance with a cash savings component. This is one of the most critical pieces of the financial plan and predicated on getting ahead by building and planning for your future.
The bottom line is whether you are 25 or 30, there is no better time to save than now. Your bills are typically the lowest they will ever be and you only have yourself to support financially. A general rule of thumb: if you do not have a mortgage or children, you should be saving 20% of your gross income if you want to get ahead.
Want to know more or how to set up your unique financial plan? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Gerber Kawasaki Wealth Management
2716 Ocean Park Blvd #2020
Santa Monica, CA 90405
This material contains forward looking statements and projections. There are no guarantees that these results will be achieved. Investing involves risk including potential loss of principal.