Saving in your thirties becomes increasingly difficult as your financial responsibilities increase. However, sound financial decisions during this phase of life can have profound benefits at a later stage.
Here are some common financial mistakes to avoid:
- The first is failing to draw up a budget. A proper budget is the starting point of all financial discipline and should be physically written down for later reference. Include your partner in this process as it is important to ensure that you are both on the same page.
- The second mistake is do too much too soon. Before investing you need to have accumulated enough savings. It is vital to have an emergency fund, which must have sufficient reserves to cover at least a couple months worth of expenses. This should protect you from a debt spiral in the case of an emergency.
- The third mistake is accruing bad debt. A loan to buy a house is considered “good” debt. Bad debt is using credit to finance furniture, electronics, appliances, vehicles and other items that devalue over time.
- At the age of 30 retirement may seem like it is still a long way off, but it is important to start contributing to your employer’s pension fund or a retirement annuity. You should try to contribute at least 15% of your gross monthly salary, there are significant tax benefits to such a strategy.
- It can be easy to fall under the illusion that bad things only happen to other people. Make sure you have adequate life insurance, dread disease, disability and medical cover.
- Another common blunder is to contend that wills are only for the elderly. Draft a will, review it regularly and don’t forget to tell your loved ones where to find it.
- Life insurance is important if you have dependents. It is imperative to ensure your dependents will be in a position to maintain their current standard of living if you pass away. Determine the exact amount of life insurance you need and review your cover regularly as your financial needs change
- Finally, at this stage of your life, you still have a long way to go to retirement and are in a position to take on more equity exposure. It is essential to get proper advice with regards to your investment decisions.
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