Financial planning for young people

Financial Planning and Financial Security are some of the most challenging but important skills and goals to get right. As a young person, the world is literally at your feet. In other words; you can do, be, experience and challenge anything you want, however for most young adults lack of financial resources and poor financial planning is a common issue.


 

Firstly, why do I think I have the authority to give you financial advice?  Well, that authority was given to me by the Financial Services Regulatory Commission (FSRC) from whom I am licensed. As a Financial Advisor I have spent several years working in the banking and insurance sector. I am a graduate of the University of the West Indies and has done more Certifications, Seminars and Training work-shops than I can remember. I am also a part-time Instructor at the Antigua and Barbuda International Institute of Technology (ABIIT). As such, I have a good understanding of some of the decisions we make for our families, ourselves and our careers. I am exposed to a great deal of information that would be helpful to you and provide additional solutions.

Now, since we have gotten the formalities out of the way,  I want to share with you six vital tips in developing a successful financial plan.

  1.  
  • Invest in yourself
  • Budget
  • Develop a Savings Plan
  • Control and Manage Debts
  • Seek quality Advise when needed
  • Insurance (Life, Health, Critical Illness)
  • Monitor and Evaluate


 

Invest in yourself

Studies have shown that a person with a degree makes on average six times as much money as someone who did not attained tertiary education. I will not tell you that you need to be a Lawyer or a doctor to make “good” money…. NO! What I am saying, is whatever you choose to do as a career, strive to be the best by developing your knowledge and skills in that area. As a matter of fact, some of my highest earning clients are landscapers, realtors and construction workers!
 

Budget

It is almost impossible to know how to manage your money if you don’t know what you spend it on. Having a realistic Budget will help you to plan your spending and saving each month to make sure that you stay discipline to your plan. It is very easy spend compulsively which usually result in a deviation from your budget.

 

Develop a savings plan

Saving is a vital habit to develop if you are to achieve your goals. It is recommended that you save 10% of your income each month. This is a special type of savings that you don’t plan to touch. Ensure if possible, that the interest rate on this savings plan is 3% or higher. This is to combat the negative effects of inflation. This money can be invested in a Bank account, Endowment Insurance Policies or a Pension Plan.


 

Control and Manage Debts

As a young professional, it’s almost a certainty that you will have to borrow money at some point in time. This maybe for education, a car, land or mortgage. So here are a few vital tips to manage your debts.

 

  • Only borrow if it will increase your net worth or provide safety for your family.
  • Leave home without credit cards/Cheque Books.
  • Pay off outstanding debts as soon as possible
  • Ask about Loans that have a Savings component.
  • Don’t spend impulsively, Plan!
  • Don’t create any new or unnecessary debt.
  • Don’t charge anything on your credit card that can’t be paid off at the end of the month.
  • Don’t make financial promises you can’t keep.
  • Don’t forget to seek out advise if necessary.
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Seek quality advice

When you are not feeling well, do you go to the doctor? Or if the lights in your home are flickering, you call an electrician?  If the answer is yes; why when a person is planning their finances and the future they don’t consult a Financial Advisor? This is a dangerous game to play as your finances are usually managed throughout you working life which last about 40 years on average. This means, the longer you take to really put things in place, the less time you will have to do so, and the more difficult it will be to have enough money after retirement. “It is recommended that a young person should start saving towards their future from the first pay-check!”

I

nsurance (Life, Health, Critical Illness, etc.)

Insurance plays a vital part of your financial plan as it covers the “what ifs”. In life, you could be doing everything right as it pertains to your financial goals and then a critical illness such as cancer, loss of vision, loss of mobility, other health concerns or even death could strike!  In these events, Insurance would replace the income loss due to disability or death. This is one of the main components of my job. As an Insurance Advisor, I ensure that my clients are protected financially both in life and in death. You may ask; how can someone be protected in death? The answer is very simple, in that, your financial concerns continues even after someone dies. For example, when a bread-winner such as a father dies, the financial burden falls on the mother to buy food, pay mortgage, house rent, bills, schools fees, etc. Insurance would now replace that father’s income back to the family.

 

Monitor and Evaluate

Just like any other project, you must keep an eye on your progress to make sure that you stay on course and that any changes are accounted for. As a young professional, you will go through many stages of life such as; getting married, starting a family, purchasing a house, pursuing management degrees, retirement and so on. All these difference changes will require another look at your current position and make any adjustments needed to take into account these new developments. Your Financial Advisor will be important in this process of making recommendations.  Just like taking a long road trip, the route may change but the destination remains the same!

 

Thank you for taking the time to read this post, feel free to contact me for a free consultation. No Cost! No obligation!

 

Kirklin A. McKay (BSc.) | Advisor.

SAGICOR LIFE INC

Sagicor Financial Centre | No. 9 Sir Sydney Walling Highway | St. John's | Antigua

Tel: +1-268-484-5532 | Fax +1-268-480- 5561