Financial Commandments For Your Mid-Twenties
You have now graduated university, found your first “proper” job and maybe even a serious relationship – now may be the perfect time to build a solid financial foundation for the rest of your life.
Handle finances responsibly by avoiding taking on unnecessary debt.The risk of accumulating debt in 20s is quite high: keeping up with peers is hard work. The endless OEs and new gadgets are forming a lot of debt for young adults. Remember that everyone’s financial circumstances and aspirations are different, and even if your friends prefer to live up large, you may want to start off on the right foot by avoiding unnecessary debt, like credit cards.
Talking about debt, take care of your student loan: although it’s interest-free, just imagine the feeling once it’s been paid off! According to students.org.nz, the average student loan debt is now $24,405. It could take you over 6 years to repay your student loan or even longer considering the average salary of graduates. Be sure you are paying a percentage of your student loan off every pay day. Delaying payment of your student loan will extend the debt burden into your thirties, an age when you will have more financial commitments – such as a mortgage and kids.
Advancing your career and learning to negotiate is also one of the most important things you can do in your mid-twenties. You will have spent years developing marketable skills, so make sure you get the most out of it: look for and create opportunities for yourself. Do your research to ensure you are paid enough, and don’t be afraid to ask for more – negotiations are a part of business.
Save for emergencies and retirement! This can, no doubt, be difficult when you are trying to juggle so many things at once, but the earlier you start, the more wealth you will accumulate by the time you retire. Even if you can only make minimal contributions, it is better than nothing- and the Government’s kick-start payment along with employer’s contributions will make it grow even faster. Building an emergency fund is equally important: ideally, you should aim to have at least 6 months’ salary put aside in case you lose your job.