Once you’ve reached your 30s, you’ve probably learned a financial lesson or two, whether that comes from experience or reading articles on how to manage your income. However, learning is a lifelong journey, and your 30s will bring you new challenges with money.
That’s why we’ve come up with a guide to help you take care of your money once you’ve hit that 30-mark.
1. If you haven’t already, build your emergency fund now.
Maybe your 20s were spent figuring out what you really needed to invest in—life insurance, a house, and a job you see yourself in for the long-term, for example. But now that you’ve hopefully settled that, it’s time to get real about your emergency fund.
Having one will help you to plan for worst-case scenarios, and the first step would be to build your fund to somewhere between three to six times your monthly expenses before setting goals depending on your monthly income. However, this can vary and having some amount of emergency savings is better than none.
2. Live within your means.
It’s okay to treat yourself once in a while, but those weekly boba drinks do tend to add up! Spending your entire paycheck with little to no savings at the end of the month is not good for your financial health. Perhaps start by living off around 90% of your income and saving the other 10% before gradually increasing the amount you save while decreasing the amount spent.
3. Start getting real about your financial goals.
In your 20s, your financial goals might have been somewhat vague with room left for interpretation. However, hitting the 30-mark is a reminder that we’re not getting any younger, and it’s important to sit and envision what you’d like to achieve, and by what age.
From travel plans (once the borders open) to paying off your debt or buying a home if you haven’t yet, it takes due diligence and careful planning to consider what the costs may be in order to achieve these goals.
4. Start saving up for retirement.
An emergency fund is for a rainy day—a retirement fund ensures that you’ll have enough funds to live off once you’re no longer working full-time. It’s always better to begin earlier, but your 30s is a prime time to start increasing the percentage of your income set aside for retirement, in addition to what you’re already contributing to your TAP/SCP funds.
Aside from a retirement fund, you can also start looking into investment. This is another way to actively take charge of your financial security by growing your wealth and generating additional income, ahead of retirement. A good start would be to look into SCB’s wealth products and services to decide which one is suitable for your income and financial goals.
5. Stick to your budget and keep track of your spending.
Try not to leave room for additional expenses that you haven’t kept track of at the beginning of the month. Create a monthly budget that helps you to keep tabs of your cash flow, because mindless spending is one of the biggest things that contribute to an unhealthy financial situation.
Monitor your spending, and learn to establish the balance between living comfortably while still having consistent savings — once you’ve started to earn more, it can be easy to increase your spending to match that new income, but you need to stop this line of thinking because it may only cause you to live beyond your means.
6. Talk to a financial adviser.
When in doubt, talk to someone who knows better. Get in touch with SCB’s certified advisors!
Planning for your financial future is incredibly important, and you may need some advice to decide where you should put in more of your savings, or which areas of your life you should invest in more. Having someone who can help you plan all of that will help to ease your mind and show you ways to hit those financial goals. Find a financial adviser that aligns with your mindset and can offer personalized advice for you.