Do you want to retire young and be financially free? Or you want to eliminate debt? If YES, here are 50 best personal finance tips and tricks for young adults.
Handling finances can be very tricky even for full adults, not to mention the ones who are just beginning to evolve into the world of responsibility and mature expectations. For the most part, everyone usually has his/her own habits when it comes to managing finances. Some people are lucky enough to start proper financial practices early in life, so it isn’t too difficult for them to have a well-structured financial support when translating into adulthood.
Most on the other hand didn’t have such a good report when it comes to how they handle their money. So such practices even shows itself in their adult life, but this article can serve as an insight into some of the tips and tricks that can help a young adult produce good practice with his/her finances.
Do You Really Need to Work on your Personal Finance?
We all know some of the things we are about to discuss here, however, putting them to practice in our lives might be the challenge. Some have come to accept their bad practice as a part of their lives, as though it was something that cannot change. But most of the things we do now as part of our characters are things we learnt and developed over the years through either deliberate training or passive training.
The truth to that no matter how bad your present financial practice is, you can start from today to pay attention to what your money is doing, to effectively turn the tide. You would be surprised at how much extra money you actually have every month when you begin to pay attention to your money. With proper financial practice you can begin to see the possibilities of a future you only dream about because you had not started building the financial structures to sustain it.
Finances typically rule about 95% of everything in this world, every desire, need or want we may seek can be traced to certain amounts in hard currency. You almost cannot escape it, it’s everywhere, and finances are how we feed, clothe ourselves, maintain our good health and so on. So it will behoove the growing adult to begin to take stock of what their money is doing, where it’s coming from and where it’s going to.
Most people are suffering in their adult lives because of the bad financial practices they picked up as young adults. Some reflect with regret as to how they handled massive funds that may have come into their possession in times past, either by a deal going awesomely well, or by some other opportunity they made use of.
But if we start practicing proper financial principles from the time we start making money, when we enter into the weightier stages of life, we would be well prepared for the multiple decisions that come with life. Just in case you have no idea where to begin to manage your finances as a young adult, below are 50 tips and tricks you can key into.
50 Best Personal Finance Tips & Tricks for Young Adults
1. Make Up Your Mind To Do Better Financially
It doesn’t matter how many advice you get on how to have a much better financial life, if you have not made a decision in your heart to get better, you won’t. It’s like an addict, and in a way we have all been addicted to bad financial practice.
An addict who doesn’t want to quit from the depth of the heart will not respond to any kind of treatment they receive, because deep down inside they do not want to change, they may say they want to, but the conviction has not come yet.
The same thing goes for having a proper financial life; one has to make a strong decision from the heart that they want to take up better financial habits. It’s just like losing weight, no matter how the person may desire to lose weight, if the person does not commit to the decision to lose weight, they won’t. They will keep falling back into the same eating patterns that lead to the unwanted weight. So you must strongly desire the change and make a commitment to the practices that will help you.
2. Write Down Your Budget
So now we get into the major foundation for evolving your financial lifestyle, write down your monthly budget. Without a budget, you are flying blind basically, you will spend money emotionally and this is dangerous. If you purchase things or make financial decisions impulsively, you will need a budget to keep you focused on the plan in which you desire to execute.
So take out the time to sit down, and look into where your money is coming from, and where it is going to. Your budget isn’t simply talking about writing your income and expenses; you also have to list your debts, savings and so on. A budget is like the skeleton that holds the body of all your financial responsibilities together.
You could choose to use the excel sheet on your computer to put the entire budget in very clear terms or you could choose to write it on a paper. No matter the choice you pick, the same benefit will be achieved if you discipline yourself to following your budget.
One tip of sticking to your budget is to keep looking at it, regularly, so when you think of spending impulsively, you would know what your budget says and you can effectively resist the urge or easily succumb to it, because you know the state of your financial resources.
3. Have An Objective For Your Savings
Most people wonder why they can’t seem to save; they set aside some money for savings every month but usually end up using the money for something else. Apart from a lack of self-discipline, another reason why one may not be able to save is because usually there is not major objective for that money being saved. If one was saving for a particular goal, then there would be more resolve to leave the money untouched.
We all respond to goals and objectives differently, but generally, when there is a strong reason behind putting that money aside, we tend to be more tenacious with our approach to savings. And with every passing month, it gets a lot easier to simply put that money aside, the walls of discipline will continue to build over time, until it almost feels like second nature to put money aside for that particular purpose.
One way or another we must learn the practice of saving; we shouldn’t always keep ourselves without any money. We also cannot continue to purchase things on impulse, it is better to save towards the things we usually just want to purchase at the whim of the moment.
4. Minimize Costs On Your Phone Bills
Our cell phones have become part of our lives almost like our arms or legs. We can’t seem to go three days without them; we love to communicate with our loved ones and friends. With our cell phones, we can check the e-mails, socialize with friends, even do serious office work. But we need to check how much money is going into the services we purchase on our phones.
There are certain services we participate with on our cell phones that may not be so necessary. Even some calls we make, sometimes must not be for the long minutes we usually have such calls for. Learning to look at how money is spent through this particular means is very important. You cell phone could be taking more money from you than you can even imagine, look into it and minimize the cost of your phone bills.
5. Check Your Credit Habit
Buying things on credit may seem very helpful at first but it is a monster that should not be fed, or even if you are going to feed it, let it be on a tight diet. In other words, you need to check how many things you are purchasing on credit.
They tend to pile up especially if you have a credit card. Multiple credit cards have not been far from the possession of young adults coming up in life, it may seem cheeky at first to swap credit details on multiple cards, but the practice will eventually lead to financial ruin.
Looking at your budget will also help you see how much you owe already, so you can curb the urge to buy so many of the things you desire to buy on credit. If you don’t have to have that item now, put it off till later, put it off till when you have the money to purchase it flat out.
6. Investigate Payable Options For Your Loans
As a young adult on their way up in the world, you would normally get loans for various things you may need in your life. A new car, paying for your university, master’s education and paying for rent could be just a few things you may need a loan for. When getting the application for the loan, look very well at the fine print or ask the financial officer working with you of the various payment options available for this loan.
When you know the various payment options that are made available for you, you would have more insight into the various creative ways you can pay these loans off. If you cultivate the discipline to stick to the process, you would be able to pay off some hefty loans by some of the more lenient methods available. It helps to be in the know; it helps to ask the financial officer questions about the various options in paying the loan back.
7. Practice The Cash First Approach
When you have made up your mind that you won’t purchase anything except you have the cash first, you get to stay away from the credit habit entirely. This is the cash first approach where you choose to control yourself and wait until you have enough cash to purchase the items. Or you could save up the money, but the habit remains that if you have not raised the cash by proper income endeavours then you do not purchase the item.
Practicing cash first approach is extremely helpful especially when you want to come out of debt acquired by the misuse of credit cards. It will take a lot of discipline and self-sacrifice but the benefits are great when you look at your pockets.
8. Don’t Keep Pushing Back On Loans Payment
We usually like to procrastinate on paying our loan installments when due, thinking we can make up the difference. But the truth is each time you push a particular installment back, it piles up. This is something you cannot run away from, it will come to meet you wherever you are. So it makes no difference trying to dip your head in the sand like an ostrich; face the installments as they come, to avoid a much bigger problems in future.
9. Learn Self Control
This is the foundation of all effort you would put into having a better financial life. Self-control is the ability to influence yourself in a direction you choose, rather than a direction your body wants to go, that may not be good for what you want to achieve. Well, that’s my personal definition, but you get the point, it will require a lot of proving yourself to develop proper financial practices.
10. Find Cheaper Ways For Leisure And Fun
You don’t have to do something extremely expensive before you enjoy yourself. I know it seems cool to go out with the friends every Friday, for the usual hang out, but look at what such a practice is doing to your pockets. How much do you spend when you go out like that, who gets to pay? Wouldn’t it be better to simply find other cheaper ways of having fun, stay home, invite your friends over for a nice movie.
11. Start Up A More Healthy Lifestyle
Whether we want to admit it or not it costs more to put in a whole lot of junk into our bodies. It will cost less if we simply switched up our diet and begin to eat healthier. Another way this helps is that it keeps away some health issues that may arise from living in an unhealthy way. Much of these types of health issues may cost the person a lot to overcome.
12. Bargain Prices From Time To Time
Are you part of those people who simply buys everything as they were told? There are markets in your area where you could bargain on the price so as to get a lesser amount for your purchase. In this you would have to be conscious of the kind of place you are, and then develop your bargaining ability, to buy costly things for cheaper, thus saving your pocket.
13. Spend Based On Your Income
You’ve heard the phrase, “cut your coat according to your size?” well that statement has never been so true when it comes to finances. We all have the little need inside to have a grander life that we already do have. Or maybe to give the impression that we do, but there’s no need to go into financial ruin, trying to impress people who don’t really care about you. Spend what you have, so you can eventually have what you spend.
14. Pay Attention To Your Credit Habit
Even if you do choose to buy things on credit, put a check on your credit habit. Always weigh in on how much debt you are getting into, what it would cost to pay it off and how this affects your general financial ecosystem. So simply put, you should stay in the know about how much you need to pay back on the items you are purchasing by credit.
15. Listen To Advise From People Who Have Handled Their Finances Well
As a young adult, one thing that is common is the impression that you already know everything about life. That you can take care of yourself, you may want to think that you don’t need any advice or suggestion from anyone. But if you are lucky to have people in your life who have handled their finances well over the years and have produced consistency in financial growth, listen to them when they advice you on what you should do with the money you make.
16. Borrow Items Instead of Money
I know you like that new gaming console that just came out and you are thinking of buying it, or some other gadget you would love to have. If you have friends that have such items, you could borrow them for a short time and then return afterwards, pending when you have enough money to buy your own.
17. Maintain Your Assets and Gadgets Properly-: If you have a car, or some other item in your care it would be much cheaper to make sure it is well maintained rather than spending so much money on fixing it when it gets damaged due to poor maintenance practice.
18. Become Structured in Your Life
You are a young adult, the time of living wild and free is over, and you need to be more responsible in your lifestyle choices. Refrain from behaviours that can cause you to lose your job, losing jobs due to bad behavior is childish and creates too much instability for your finances to grow. Live a more structured and turbulence free life, so your finances can grow in a healthy environment.
19. Accept A Flat Mate
I Know you want to live on your own and be all independent, but sometimes having someone else in the house splitting the bill with your goes a long way in keeping your pocket happy. Both of you will definitely split the rent, utility bills, gas and all others. It’s a good way to save costs.
20. Stop Showing Off A “Larger Than You” Lifestyle
You’ve got nothing to prove to anyone, you don’t have to show off that you too can get the nicest cars, houses or gadgets. Simply live in a content manner and be satisfied with what you have. After all if you practice proper financial habits you will eventually be able to afford all of that without stress.
21. If You Cannot Let Go of The Money, Don’t Loan It
From time to time people are going to ask you for loans, some may be amounts of money you can do away with in case they don’t pay back, others are large amounts that you can’t afford to let go of, if they don’t pay back. The rule of thumb is this, if you know you cannot do away with that money, don’t loan it.
22. Do Regular Health Check Ups
If you don’t already do this then begin to, because like a popular saying goes “Prevention is better than cure”. Most times the health issues most people face, proceed from a much harmless complication that grew into what is now challenging the person. If regular health checks were done, such illnesses would have been spotted beforehand and treated accordingly. It is usually more expensive dealing with illnesses in their full blown stage.
23. Make Your Partner Your “Partner”
One thing you can do is get the person you are seeing to assist you in your aim to practicing proper financial principles. They could help remind you of some payments you had not made, or some bad practices you are about to lapse into. In any case it helps to have some type of support.
24. Don’t Shop With Extravagant Spenders
Some people just can’t help but buy expensive things; when going to do your shopping, make sure those kinds of people are not with you. They have a way of making you spend more than you intend to.
25. Make Substitutions That Cut Costs
There are certain things you definitely cannot do without, the thing is that such items may be costly if you look at how much they are priced. It is possible to look for a much cheaper alternative that does not compromise on the quality of the items, but also does not put a hole in your pocket.
26. Research What You Want To Buy Before Purchase
It is possible nowadays to go online, look through the different prices of the things you want to purchase, to compare prices before you go to the shop and buy. This is a nice approach to cheapening costs and making your spending more planned.
27. Reduce Your Bills
Generally this appears to be one of the most basic ways of getting your finances in order. You can cut your bill down, you can look around how you use your money, pay attention to the things that are not expedient and cut them off, so you can focus on the necessities and the essentials.
28. Watch Where Your Money Goes
If you pay attention to where the higher percentage of your money goes, you would know exactly what your money is going into. The good thing about this is you can always change your financial practice and invest in things of importance.
29. Invest Your Money
This of course is one of the basic tips for your money, learn to invest and learn to invest early. Look at the options available to you, learn about the different instruments and entities you can invest it. Speak to a broker, get informed on the entire matter and begin to invest your money.
30. Buy More Valuable Items
Sometimes it pays more to buy things of a better quality but that may be more costly, than to buy the cheaper one that collects even more money from you through maintenance. So instead of you to buy the cheaper laptop that will eventually hurt your pockets as you try to fix every bug, it would be better to buy it brand new so it lasts longer.
31. Stop Unnecessary Subscriptions
Many services want you to subscribe to their offers on a monthly basis, like the gym you do not have the time to go for, or those magazines you don’t read anymore. Yes a few of these things could cost so little it seems insignificant but it all adds up in the end.
32. Take Up Special Budgeting Approaches
There are different budgeting practices that could be suitable for your type of personality and spending habits. Research on the different types of budgeting practices and find out the best approach to budgeting that speaks to you favourably.
33. Download Budgeting Software
With the advances of technology, we have a lot of help when it comes to things we want to accomplish. One of such is the various budgeting software available for download free. These smart applications can help you watch your budget and send you notifications to keep you in step with your spending. Get one free and start using it.
34. Do It Yourself Sometimes
There are times when you have things you need to fix, or learn. Now there are professionals who do these things for a fee, but today there are a lot of information out there about how to do things, that you can actually learn to do certain things yourself.
Instead of paying for some of these services sometimes, you could simply learn and execute it by yourself. Of course there are things that require professionals, learn to draw the line, but save costs sometimes by learning to do it yourself.
35. Sell Items You Don’t Need Anymore
You could build up quite a clutter with things you probably will not need anymore. Sometimes we have this sentimental attachment to these things. But realistically some of those things could be sold for extra money and even help in freeing up space in your house or storage unit. Identify what those items are and sell them.
36. Keep a Lid on Your Excesses
Excesses sometimes come in the form of things we like to do that may not be so good for our well-being but we still love to indulge in them. Sometimes these practices are very expensive not just financially, but they could also be expensive to our health. We can either learn to control how we indulge or we cut it off entirely.
37. Get A Cheaper Place
As a single young adult, do you really need all that space, or do you really need to be in that neighborhood? If you do your analysis well you will discover that sometimes choosing an apartment that costs so much in rent, without the necessary perks, could do more harm than good. It would be more financially prudent to get a cheaper place.
38. Learn How To Manage Your Money
Take out time to speak to a financial adviser, have him look at your money and tell you some of the best ways to manage your funds effectively.
39. Trace Your Networth
Now that you are getting older, you would have to stop thinking of just getting a savings account, and start looking into tracking how much you are worth as a whole. Start looking into building your net worth.
40. Work Harder To Make More Money
Now is not the time for you to get lazy, begin to work harder to make more money, seek for multiple ways to generate income. Multiple streams of income will go a long way in setting you up for life.
41. Change Jobs if Necessary
If your current job isn’t enough when it comes to the bills and responsibilities you have on your plate, you could seek for employment elsewhere. Don’t be afraid to make that move where it is necessary but think it through before making that kind of transition.
42. Have An Emergency Account
Open a special account where you would put money for when there is an emergency either in your life or in the life of a loved one, where you know the financial responsibility will fall on you eventually.
43. HAVE MULTIPLE ACCOUNTS
It is finance 101 all over again, one of the first few things to learn when it comes to proper financial practice is to have a separate accounts for different things. You could have your expense account; this would definitely be separate from your savings account and so on.
44. Get Acquainted With An Adviser on Finances
When you have a prudent financial adviser as a friend, you can get over the table advice on what is going on in the world of finance and how you can take full advantage of it.
45. Build Your General Wealth
Grow your wealth, build your wealth, focus on the practice of increasing your resources so that one day what you have at your disposal will be greater than whatever need you may have.
46. Start Now To Prepare For Retirement
It is easy as a young adult to say retirement is for when I get a little bit older. But the years are fast approaching, you are getting older by the minute, do not allow the times catch up with you unawares. Begin to prepare for your retirement now.
47. Get Into Investment
Not only should you know about investing your money, you should also invest it, where it needs to be. Don’t be afraid to put money out there for your investments, if you do this rightly you can watch your money grow as it works for you.
48. You Don’t Have To Travel
It’s the holiday season, many people are planning different vacation destinations, you don’t have to travel for holidays. Try out new things right where you are for the holiday seasons from time to time, to save some much needed cash.
49. Pay Your Important Bills Before Lesser Needs
When you budget of course you prioritize, make sure you practice paying your much heavier or important bills before you start putting money into lesser things like entertainment or clothing.
50. Forget The Social Media Hype
Most people want to follow what they see on social media, thinking it is real. They too want to wear the latest expensive clothes or drive those cars. But the reality is that most of those posing with such items don’t own those things, so if you believe the hype you may make wrong financial decisions.
In conclusion, this might seem like a long list but, it is in no way conclusive on the many things young adults can do to perfect their financial practices. Feel free to go through the list again, and find out the ones you can start practicing yourself, so as to begin to enjoy a financially stable life.
I’m sure some will be easier than others, but no doubt all will be beneficial for you. Having a solid financial life is a strong support structure for the responsibilities you have and the lifestyle you want to live. So begin today to put these tips into practice and watch how lovely things will get for you in a short time.