Investing can change your life-if you do it early enough. Understanding what you need to focus on for each decade can give you a leg up in your finances. It can allow you to pay for college, save money for retirement, travel, or even retire early. What are some investment tips for each decade?
Investing In Your 20’s
In your 20’s, you are just starting your career. You may think you do not need to do much investing for retirement, but you may be wrong. If you begin investing 10-15% of your income in your 20’s, you can continue at this rate, but if you wait, you will have to start saving a higher percentage of your income. You want to focus on paying off debt, especially student loans, during your 20’s, as well as building your credit. Your credit score will affect a great deal of your financial life, including interest rates, employers, and more.
Investing In Your 30’s
In your 30’s, you want to focus on building your career, as well as keep putting money into your retirement fund at the rate of 10-15% of your income, or start investing 15-25% and begin to think about having a family. This will dictate a need for a slightly larger emergency fund, life insurance, and to have your will written. By the end of your 30’s, you should have saved about two to three times your household income – if you started saving in your 20’s. If you are just starting to save, you will need to aggressively save to meet this goal.
Investing In Your 40’s
In your 40’s, you need to be amping up retirement savings. You are most likely earning more than you did in your 20’s and 30’s, so take advantage of this by saving as much as possible. Now is the time to think about paying for college for your kids and the arrangement of your finances for your child to get maximum financial aid help. Another thing you want to consider is your estate plan, including your will and life insurance. By your mid-40’s, you want to have saved around four times your household income.
Investing In Your 50’s
During your 50’s, you are gearing up for retirement. Your kids may have graduated from college and have begun their own lives. Increase your investments and take advantage of the higher retirement account contribution limits. When you are 50 or older, you can put an additional $6000 (for a total of $24,000) in your 401(k) up from the $18,000 before that. Look at your retirement projections to ensure that you are on track. By your mid-50’s, you should have saved six to seven times your household income.
The decades before retirement are important. The earlier you begin, the more likely your savings/investments will be on track when you retire. Plan ahead, and you will enjoy your retirement in just the way you always imagined without financial stress.