It’s never too late to start saving for retirement. In fact, even if you’re already in debt, there are some things you can do to start putting more money aside for the future. Here are three tips to get you started.
Make a budget and stick to it
The first step to putting more money aside is to take a close look at your spending habits and make a budget. Track how much you spend each month on necessities like housing, food, and transportation, and see where you can cut back. For example, you might be able to save on your monthly car payment by downsizing to a more affordable vehicle. Once you’ve created a budget, commit to sticking to it.
Invest in yourself
Investing in yourself is one of the best ways to prepare for retirement. Whether it’s taking classes to improve your job prospects or simply learning how to cook healthier meals, anything you can do to increase your skills and knowledge will pay off down the road. Not only will you be more marketable when it comes time to retire, but you’ll also be able to enjoy a higher quality of life.
Live below your means
One of the best ways to start putting more money aside is to spend less than you earn simply. If you can learn to live on 80% of your income, you’ll have 20% left over each month that you can put into savings or investment accounts. It may not seem like much, but it can add up over time! Plus, living below your means now will make retirement much easier when the time comes.
Pay off credit card debt
Credit cards come with high-interest rates that eat into your disposable income. Start paying off credit cards to put that money aside for retirement. According to Symple Lending, paying down credit card debt sooner than later is an essential key to preparing for retirement.
For example, if you carry $5000 on credit cards with an annual interest rate of 16 percent per year, then you are paying the credit card company $800 every year that you could be putting toward your retirement savings. If you invest $800 a year every year starting at age 25, you would have more than $700,000 in your retirement account.
Experian has a free credit card payoff calculator. Try it and make a plan to pay them all off.
Saving for retirement may seem like a daunting task, but it’s important to remember that even small steps can make a big difference down the road. By following these three tips, you can start putting more money aside for the future and ensure that you’re prepared for whatever comes next.