Everyone says, "your 20s will be the best time of your life.” At least, everyone who already made it through them (relatively) unscathed by questionable relationships, mediocre apartments, and countless cheap meals.
But seriously, they’re right in many ways: you’re finally an adult with greater control over how and where you spend your days. For likely the first time, you can follow your passions and carve out a unique place in the world alongside the people that matter to you.
However, you’re also probably fully in charge of your finances – which isn’t quite as fun.
Without the safety net of your family or the excuse of “being a kid,” it’s on YOU to maintain your financial health in the present while setting financial goals for a bright future.
But just like life, you don’t have to figure it out alone!
EXTRA is here to help with our 4 Financial Goals to Meet in Your 20s:
1. Develop a Financial Safety Net
A financial safety net – sometimes referred to as an emergency fund – is crucial to financial peace of mind. Without it, you’re susceptible to a significant expense that can wreck your savings account.
Nearly 60% of Americans don’t have enough in their savings account to cover a $500 expense. You DO NOT want to be a part of that group.
While the stability of your income, housing situation, debt repayments, etc., dictate how much you can save, we recommend saving at least 2% of your paycheck each month to help you cover any future financial emergency down the line.
After six months, this savings goal should be enough to help cover you for some unexpected expenses, like medical emergencies, job loss, breakdown of a household appliance, etc.
2. Build Credit
Developing a solid credit score should undeniably be one of your short-term financial goals.
A good credit score is ESSENTIAL to your financial well-being. Without it, you simply won’t be able to live your best life – like a Kardashian without access to social media.
Your credit rating dramatically influences your ability to receive loans, access high-quality credit cards, increase your housing options, enjoy some insurance discounts, and more.
You probably know the basics of your credit score, but just in case, here are the factors that determine it:
- Payment History: 35%
- Total Debt: 30%
- Length of Credit History: 15%
- Credit Mix: 10%
- New Credit: 10%
These factors give you a general credit score that breaks down like this:
- >720: Excellent
- 690-719: Good, keep at it
- 630-689: Fair, but nothing to write home about
- <629: Not good, not good at all
Some tips featured in this article will help you build a great score, so keep reading on!
3. Apply for a Needed Loan
Of course, applying for a loan is only recommended if you NEED one. However, if you’re in your 20s and want to purchase more expensive things, odds are you do.
Successfully applying for a loan with a favorable interest rate and repaying it on time can be a great way to build up your credit slowly — ditto for car loans or any personal loans you may need. That’s what makes it a fantastic long-term financial goal.
If you’re lucky and don’t NEED a loan but still want to start building credit, you can also take out a credit-builder loan, the bicycle with training wheels of the lending world.
A credit-builder loan is not as standard as more traditional options, however, and works a bit differently:
Instead of getting your loan up-front and paying it off over weeks, months, or years, credit-builder loans require set, monthly deposits into an account. Then, when your loan terminates, you can access your money fee-free.
Think of this type of loan as an internship that leads to an actual job. It’s a money goal that helps you prove that you’re competent and responsible enough to access better opportunities in the future.
4. Check out EXTRA
EXTRA is the first debit card that helps you build credit, combining the benefits of debit and credit into one fantastic package. No gimmicks, no catch!
After you sign up – no credit check required – we connect your EXTRA card to your bank account and create a spending limit based on your existing balance.
We’ll spot you for each purchase you make, then automatically pay ourselves back the next business day with no interest or hidden fees.
At the end of each month, we total all your transactions and report them to the major credit bureaus as credit-worth payments, helping you build a solid credit score.
Plus, you’ll enjoy great rewards like discounts on everything from AirPods to meal kits from Blue Apron.
Sounds pretty great, right?
Try it out for yourself — check out how to get started with Extra for super easy spending.
Financial Goals in Your 20s In Summary
Your 20s are an exciting time full of constant change and personal growth. To make the most of this fantastic period, it’s crucial that you proactively take care of your financial health. After, what is personal finance, if not another form of self-love?
While your plan should depend on your financial situation and needs, financial goal examples like developing an emergency fund, building credit, taking out and paying off needed loans, and signing up for EXTRA are great goals to set for yourself.
While you may feel like a kid still, now is the time to be an adult who takes care of themselves and lays the groundwork for a bright financial future. Trust us; it’s not as hard as it sounds!