by Anicka Oaks,
Your 20s is one of the most exciting periods of your life. This is the decade where you’ll lay the framework for the rest of adulthood, which includes developing financial habits that will have a strong impact on your future. In your 20s, you’ll start your career and probably be earning a steady income for the first time.
Naturally, you’ll want to spend any extra cash you have on fun activities like weekend trips, brunch and clothes. There are also plenty of investments to consider such as a car and your first house. But money you spend doesn’t always make its way back, so you have to make sure that you develop good saving and spending habits now that don’t make you feel too confined.
Read on for three tips for hitting the perfect balance between spending and saving in your 20s.
Stick to a Budget
A lot of twenty-somethings just assume anything leftover in their bank account is fair game, but this mentality quickly leads to overspending and no savings. A budget will help you be more conscious of what you purchase and allow you to begin saving more than the bare minimum every month.
Just because you have money to spend doesn’t mean you should. Find ways to cut extra costs out of your weekly spending. This could mean brewing coffee and taking it to work instead of buying it out or saying no to the $8 container of chocolate-covered pistachios at the supermarket.
Everything has its place in a well-planned budget, including treats. You may also find that you appreciate the little things more when you don’t allow yourself to constantly indulge.
Plan Private Events Ahead of Time
Whether it’s a birthday bash or an engagement party, make sure that you take time to think about how much the special private events in your life will cost. Many people in their 20s underestimate how much things will cost, and they often overspend because they didn’t take enough time to plan things out and stick to a designated budget.
Limiting your alcohol consumption at an event is just one way you can keep more money in your wallet and prioritize your finances.
Start Paying Student Loans ASAP
There is a six-month grace period after you graduate before you have to start paying student loans, but did you know you can also begin paying back your debt before you’ve finished college? Pay close attention to your final estimate and any interest rates. It’s vital that you understand how your repayments will impact other aspects of your life, including how much money you can reasonably afford to pay in rent and general living expenses.
If you’re anxious about paying back your student debt, talk to your providers about loan consolidation and work out a schedule that will give you a solid picture of how much you’ll need to earn and save each month for your payments.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Your parents were once in their 20s, and it won’t hurt to ask them for some financial advice if you’re struggling to figure yours out. Don’t think about reaching out as a sign of incompetence—instead, it demonstrates self-awareness and commitment to being financially responsible.
Saving And Spending Your Way to Financial Freedom
You can also talk to your bank about opening a savings account and do some research online to learn all about credit cards, spending habits and the best way to customize your budget.