Top Questions to Ask in Your Twenties
Your twenties are a time of change where you are likely starting a new job that has a potential to become a career, perhaps you are buying a new home or even getting married. Let’s cover three areas to pay attention to in your twenties
- What should you consider when starting a new job?
Starting a new job is an exciting time of life. New people to meet and new responsibilities to understand. The first thing is cash flow planning. How does your new income impact your tax burden along with you cash flow. Review your emergency fund and your savings plan. It's easy to start spending too soon when you get a significant pay increase. The second area to review with a new job are the employee sponsored benefits, these include but are not limited to health insurance, retirement plans, stock options, deferred compensation, or an HSA. Understanding what is available is critical, for example if you are offered a 401k with a company match, getting starting savings as soon as possible can be very beneficial over time.
- What should you consider when buying a home?
Income, income, income! Buying a new home it's easy to overbuy, maintenance costs are surprising for first time home buyers. There is no landlord to call that will fix any surprise problems. It is all up to you. Understanding your income and building in an appropriate emergency fund for your home is critical. Just ask any homeowner, it seems that roofs start leaking only in the middle of winter and AC units only break on the hottest days of the summer. If you have other debts, like student loans or auto loans, that will impact future income. Remember, debt is just borrowing from your future earnings. The more you borrow the more you must pay back! Taking extra time to understand your cash flow and income will help minimize surprises and help you from over buying a home that can derail future goals like family, retirement, or travel.
- What should you consider when you are getting married?
Getting married is a complex topic and today we will just focus on a few financial considerations, being married for 10 years I can tell you that you will never ask enough questions before you get married because it is different that you would expect. Two main areas to cover are debt and income. What are you career and personal goals, what about your future spouse? What are the expectations around working and income level? Can you two get on the same page with regards to savings? The second is understanding any debts the other may have. Debt obligations come first, and it can be a stressful surprise if misunderstood. Knowing where you and your future spouse stand as well as who is responsible for the debt is a tough conversation but one that must happen.
Your twenties are a busy time. But taking time and asking and re-asking yourself these questions may help you get on and stay on good financial footings. We have extensive questions and checklists, if you would like to walk through your situation reach out. Garrett@ascendinvestment.com.
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