Your whole life
is ahead of you

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What you need to know before you’re 35

You’re young, healthy, and alive. A lot of people might tell you these are the best years of your life.

We believe, if you plan in these years, every year will be the best year of your life.

Your 20’s and early 30’s are the time you often start your career, meet that special someone, and find a place of your own. They’re also the time that you learn the meaning of hard work and the value of a dollar. 

And while you might not have as much money now as you will in your 50’s, what you do with it will set the financial tone for the rest of your life. You want to make the smartest choices possible, so you can plan for now and that bright future ahead.


The first car you buy for yourself

You might be tempted to pick up the first car you can afford. That temptation is a powerful force. But if it makes you too broke to enjoy life, what’s the point?

Look at your car as your first major purchase. If you’ve ever dealt with car trouble before, you know that a reliable automobile will save you headaches and cash going down the road.

If you’re looking to make a wise purchase, saving now for the deposit is a wise move. And no matter what, make sure you have enough money to pay for your monthly installments going forward.

If you want to know more, please read our guide on buying a car 

Managing your major costs: education and living arrangements

If you completed tertiary education, chances are, you’re dealing with student debt. And chances are, you’re trying to make sure there’s enough left of your pay cheque at the end of every month to cover your living expenses.

For some, the sooner you pay off your tertiary education loans, the better off you’ll be. For others, that may not be the case. Speaking to a financial advisor can be a big help in finding out what’s right for you. If you’re smart about your loans now, you’ll have more money in the long-run.

As for living expenses, make sure you find a place to live that is within your price range. Budgeting is key and it’s better to live as humbly as possible and find the smartest solution for your needs. For some, that might be paying rent. For others, a down payment might be the way to go.

For more information, please see our section on buying a house

Learning how to budget and invest

When you have disposable income, you have more financial freedom. But if you don’t properly manage your money, checking your balance at the end of the month can be terrifying.

Budgeting requires taking an honest look at how much money you should save, given your financial goals. Then you must account for your rent, taxes, and other necessary expenses. Making smart choices to save money can mean securing a brighter future for you and your family. 

It’s best to live a lifestyle that is adjustable. You need to be able to adapt to a raise in taxes or some other new expense. Think of budgeting your income in 4 categories:

  1. Future funds: The amount you put into investments and in your savings account (and while it may seem far off, that includes saving for retirement).
  2. Present funds: The amount you allow yourself for current purchases, like treats.
  3. Expense funds: The amount needed for things like bills, groceries and childcare.
  4. Giving funds: The amount you give to others, like churches and charities.

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