In today’s article, we’re talking about five easy financial goals that I think anybody can start, with seriously actionable stuff. If you read this article all the way to the end and also implement just any one of these tips, you’re gonna feel a lot more in control of your finances.
Even if your financial life is under control you can still look at these tips or these financial goals, and see how you stack up against them. If you do end up enjoying this content please make sure to share it with your friends and families.
All right let’s get talking.
5 EASY Financial Goals That Anyone Can Start
The first financial goal that’s very easy that we can talk about today, that anybody can do, and it’s literally,
1. writing Down Anything That You Spend
This is something that literally everybody can do. You just bring a little notepad around with you, and every time you spend some money just write it down in that notepad. according to youneedabudget, just doing this little tip alone can save you about 10% to 20% on your expenses.
Now by writing down exactly what you spend for about two to four weeks, I personally like to do about three months. But if you can do it for two to four weeks, you’re going to get a valuable amount of data and information to even start a budget with. This is one of the habits that I’ve been doing since 2019.
Back in 2019 I actually had a drink with a senior friend of mine who happened to be my boss, non-alcoholic drinks specifically, no drinking on the job. But I had a drink with a man who had over nine figures in net worth, and he just said to me simply “Prince, if you can’t run your own life how do you expect to run a business?” And from then on he actually gave me an exercise which was to track my expenses.
In the first two months that I did this thing of tracking my expenses, my personal spending dropped by about 27%. What I personally do guys is, I have an app on my phone that’s called spending tracker, and what I’ll do is I’ll just click on this little guy and, every time I spend any money I just click add expense and I just log it right there.
At the end of every month what I do is, I move all of my expenses into a google spreadsheet manually. For those starting out, I would say try documenting it in an actual notebook physically, because that’ll help you build the habit. Do that for about two to four weeks before you move on to your phone, and track your expenses that way.
What To Focus On
The beauty of this entire exercise is that you don’t really have to focus on investing your money, you don’t have to focus on saving a certain percentage of your money. All you have to do is whenever you have an expense, write it down and that’s the sole objective of this habit. What’s really interesting about this exercise is that I didn’t feel any less happy than I did before, even though my personal spending dropped by 27%.
What I realized was I just cut out some of the things that were kind of unnecessary. This is one of the easier financial goals out there, because by doing this you’re going to be able to benefit from it immediately, and you’re going to expose some of your budgeting weaknesses.
With that being said let’s go on to our second easy financial goal which is;
2. Paying Yourself First
Paying yourself first is super easy, you just go into your online banking, set up an automatic transfer on a specific interval for example, the first or the 15th of every month, and decide how much you want to actually pay yourself. Doing this simple act will help you actually save a lot of money, this will take about 10 minutes.
By putting saving first, you’re basically mentally compartmentalizing the differences between your savings and your actual income. And this way it’ll actually build savings into more of an automated system for you.
When I was earning a regular paycheck, am still earning one though, my automatic transfer date was the 15th of every month. I would take out 15% from my paycheck and deposit it straight into a savings, account and from there you can do a few things with those savings like;
1. Start an emergency fund. if you don’t already have one of these basically, it’s three to six months of living expenses saved up in an emergency fund or a savings account that you’re never gonna ever touch, unless for an emergency.
2. Pay Off Any High Interest Rate Debt. The next thing that you can do with your savings is to pay off any high interest rate debt, or any debt in general. But I would prioritize any high interest rate debt above 10%. I think being debt free is one of the most empowering things that you can do for your own financial life, it’ll give you a lot of confidence moving forward and removes the burden of “oh my god I have to make a payment every single month”
Now it’s not intuitive, but by paying off debt you can actually make money. So if your savings account is paying you a one percent interest rate, but all of a sudden if you’re able to pay off credit card debt at 15% interest, it’s effectively like you’re earning 15% on your money.
3.Invest For Your Future. Now the last thing that you can do with these saving is to invest it for your future. I have some articles on how to invest, the types of investments that you can go after. But some of the greatest investments for beginners are things like index funds and ETFs. Personally i like ticker symbol $VOO or $VTI.
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Those are just ETFs that track the entire stock market or the S&P 500, and by buying this one fund you’re buying a small percentage of everything that that fund owns. It’s a great way to diversify and probably one of the easiest ways to get started with investing.
Now, the next financial goal that i want to talk about is so easy, that you don’t even have to do anything. There’s no work involved it’s simply a different type of mindset, and by adopting this mindset you’re going to save a lot of money.
3. Treat Your Credit Card Like Cash
With the advent of credit cards and we as a society not actually using cash anymore, it’s basically a lot easier to spend a lot of money. Physically, it’s harder to spend a hundred dollar bill, because there’s gonna be a psychological barrier when it comes to spending the hundred dollar bill. Which is “oh my god I have to break this hundred dollar bill in order to spend it.
Studies are now showing that fewer people than ever are actually carrying cash these days. And not only that, credit cards encourage extra spending because people have given up on cash, they’ve made it so easy these days to just spend your money swiping this card.
What’s the best solution?
I personally think that the best thing that you can do is to treat your credit card like cash. I have a few tips to make you feel like you’re actually spending your money, when you’re just swiping a credit card.
1. The first thing that you can do is ask for a receipt. By getting a receipt you’re physically receiving a tangible “good” after you spend your money on your credit card. And therefore it’s a better physical representation of the money you just spent.
2. You could remove the automatically saved credit card information that you might have in your computer browser or your mobile phone. I know that for me it’s physically a lot easier to spend money when all I have to press is one button, versus actually typing in the physical numbers of my credit card.
3. The last thing that you can do is whenever you’re about to make a purchase is, just check your bank account and see if you have enough money to cover that purchase. For example, if I only have a hundred dollars of cash in my wallet I’m not going to be able to buy like for example, a $500 pair of sneakers .
So by adding a few barriers to your spending, especially with a credit card you’re gonna be a lot better off financially.
Remember guys, treat your credit card as cash as much as you can.
Our next easy financial goal here is;
4. Track Your Net Worth
As the months and the years go by, this practice is actually very fun. Because as you age and you start to make more money and hopefully, pay off debt. Your net worth is going to grow larger and larger, and it’s going to be really fun to look back and see how much progress you’ve made.
To calculate your net worth it’s actually pretty easy, you just have to add up all of your assets, subtract any debts or liabilities that you may have, and the difference is your net worth. This is really oversimplified, but let’s say you had a house worth a hundred thousand dollars and a bank balance of $25,000, then your total assets would be 125k.
But let’s say you owed $30,000 on a car,well in that situation your total net worth would be $125,000 – $30,000 or simply $95,000. I like tracking my net worth on a month to month basis, but sometimes that’s a little bit too short of a time frame. I think a better time frame would be every quarter you check your net worth, because that’ll give you a better long-term financial picture.
For Fresh Grads
If you’re starting right out of college, it’s pretty common to have a negative net worth because of how much student loan debt you might have, compared to how much you have in the bank. But as long as you’re staying productive, making some income, and perhaps you’re paying yourself first which is a reference to an earlier section of this article.
You guys see what I did there, that’s like inception article section.
If you do that, I believe your net worth will start to climb. One of the main goals that you want to get to, especially right out of college is to get to a net worth balance of zero dollars. I know a zero dollar balance is not the sexiest net worth out there, but according to CNBC, most people that have student loans have student loans for their entire lifetime. That is pretty crazy.
I think that if you do get to a zero dollar net worth, you should be pretty proud of that.
There are a bunch of ways to track your net worth you can use Google sheets like I do, I just set up a bunch of columns for assets, and another bunch of columns for debts and liabilities. And I try to take the difference between them to get my net worth or you can use an app like Mint to automatically calculate your net worth.
Okay guys the next financial goal that you can easily do is;
5.Boost A Credit Score
Especially if it’s low. The first thing that you should do is to check your credit score ,because by checking your credit score you’re going to understand exactly where you might be lacking, and how to improve it quickly. For places on checking your credit score for free, you can use things like credit karma.
This is pretty good because it’s free, and it updates once a week and takes data from Transunion and Equifax. Once you have your score, improving a low credit score just comes down to knowing what the five factors that go into a credit score are, and improving on the worst ones that you might have.
The five factors are in no particular order;
1. How much you owe
2. How much credit you’re using
3. The length of your credit history
4. Your credit mix and,
5. The types of new credit.
In terms of what’s going to help you build your credit, you can seek the help of these credit firms to help you out with your credit score, CREDIT PRO and CREDIT FIRM. These credit score companies will boost your credit score in no time, even with a really negative score.
Alternatively, you can do it manually by;
1. Pay off a large portion of your balance. This usually helps your credit score the most, because it reduces your credit utilization rate which is one of the factors that goes into your FICO credit score.
2. Another thing you can do is simply ask for a limit increase. You can do this by calling your credit card company and being like “hey can i get my limit increased”. By doing so, you’re actually going to raise the amount of credit available to you, thereby reducing the amount of credit you’re actually using.
This doesn’t always work especially if your credit score might be really really low, but it does work for quite a few people out there.
3. You could just go out and get a new credit card. Now this one’s a little bit dangerous because you don’t want to just be getting a new credit card to increase your total available credit, because that seems a little bit backwards to me. But if you were gonna get a new credit card anyway, one of the added benefits is that your credit limit will probably be increased across all your credit accounts.
4. Lastly you can get added to another person’s credit card as an authorized user. This is actually known as what’s called the Authorized User Hack. To do this, you want to find someone that you trust, and that has a good credit score with a good payment history, and just ask them “hey you can do me a favor and add me to your existing credit card as an authorized user”.
You don’t even have to use the credit card that’s issued to that authorized user which is you. You just have to be attached to their account, and by being attached to their account, you’re going to piggyback off of their good credit and their good payment history, and that’s going to transfer over to your credit score.
It’s one of the quickest ways to boost your credit score. The key here though is to find someone that you trust with a good credit history, because if they start to miss payments that could actually negatively impact your credit score.
If you aren’t taking advantage of some of the hacks that i just listed, then make sure to do so.
Alright guys, if you found this article helpful at all, drop me a comment and share it with on your social platforms, and also subscribe to my mail list for future articles from me. Peace and Happy Hustling!
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