There are financial milestones that are important to meet by different ages throughout our lifetimes, but for millions, those milestones got washed out with the crisis that was 2020.! Start getting on track and make some goals to help you find your financial stride!
Finding Your Career
Decades ago this milestone would normally be places on a list for college-aged young adults. But in this economy many are having to make major changes, go back to school and rethink their career paths. There’s no shame in changing direction and figuring out what career will leave you fulfilled at the end of the day. Meet with a career coach or even a life coach to help you figure out what will work for you.
Pad Your Emergency Fund
2020 showed the world how important it is to plan for the unplanned. Protecting yourself and your family from financial disaster should be at the top of your list for things to do this year. Replenish or continue to add to your emergency funds, and increase what you are setting aside for those rainy days. Choose a savings account that has a high interest rate and don’t touch it! Let that interest accrue as you continue to save.
If you, like many Americans, had to tap into your 401(k) to make ends meet last year, it is time to increase your contributions to make up for the losses. If you took out a loan against your 401(k), pay it back as soon as possible. If you had to drain your retirement accounts, make sure that you plan accordingly because you will be taxed as if it were normal income.
Student loan forbearance was a godsend for millions of Americans, but the forbearance will only last for so long. Right now you aren’t penalized for non-payment and no interest is accruing at the moment. If you’re in the position to do so, it may be time to focus on increasing your payments. The sooner you are able to pay off those loans, the sooner you can start allocating those funds towards your forever home or other big-ticket items. If not, make sure you factor in the payment dates into your budget when the forbearance ends.
You may have had to rely on your credit cards to make ends meet in this last year. As 2021 brings a little bit more stability and returns to work, it’s time to face your credit card debt and start paying down your balances. Credit card debt is one of the leading causes of financial stress.
If you don’t yet have a life insurance policy, it’s time to get one. With the monumental loss of life in the last year, you cannot put off securing your family’s safety net should the unthinkable occur. Many policies cost less than $20/ month so there is no excuse not to.