No More Utang: How to Build Wealth and Make More In Your 30s
- January 20, 2021
- Shai Habon
So you are almost 30 (?) or maybe 30-ish or maybe 30 something, whatever the number is I’m pretty sure that at this point you’re already feeling a bit old (or matured) — really. This is that time when you become more conscious about your health, your wrinkles, your lower back pain and yes, your future.
Personally, I’d like to say that I’m one of those typical millennials who have lived my 20s with that carefree vibe. I’ve partied hard, traveled to places, made big (some bad) decisions and spent on things that I don’t really need. Although I’d have to give credit to myself for working my ass off. I literally had to juggle 8 jobs just to make sure I get to pay my rent, bills, gym membership, meal plans and other stuff, lol.
But yes, now that I’m 30, I gotta admit that things have changed drastically for me. It’s great to be 30! In fact, I think it works for me that I am still single and I have loads of time to put myself to a better state, most especially in the financial department.
It’s also the best time to plan and secure the future, although honestly, I wish I could have done it earlier. But on the flip side, it’s better than starting much later!
Now generally, the goal is to work on stuff and invest on things that add value to my life. So here, I listed a couple of my adulting “to dos” which I think are smart ways to build wealth for me and my 30 something friends
1. Turn your raises into savings.
At this point, a lot of us are making “more” compared to when we are in our 20s. Maybe we got an income raise or we found a side gig that makes us extra cash.
While it’s normal to celebrate and live the “nakaangat-angat” life, it is also essential that we understand the value of saving the “extra” for future circumstances.
Bit of trivia: There’s a phenomenon called “lifestyle creep” – a state where one’s discretionary consumption increases on non-essential items as his/her standard of living improves. With lifestyle creep, luxury goods and discretionary spending become perceived as a right to have and not a choice—as a necessity versus a want (investopedia.com).
So yup, if you are on the brink of changing your “lifestyle” just because you started getting more — DON’T.
2. Pay off high interest debts.
If there’s anything that I probably regret doing in the past, it is maximizing the power of my credit cards. I say maximize because I literally maxed-out almost all my cards (and now I’m paying all my debts including their interests, yikes)!
Sometime last year, I figured this infinite “paying of CC debts” should stop and so I decided to check on all my bills, make the necessary computations and prioritize payment for dues with higher interests. So far I’ve paid more than half of my obligations and I’m on my way on fulfilling the rest.
Lesson: Work on getting high-interest-rate debt off your plate because that will lighten the load and will make room for your investment plans.
3. Buy a house.
We all know that a house is that property that will increase in value over time. I got a property sometime 2016 and although it’s still on a home loan, I must say that I’m reaping the good points of that 20 something me decision.
Check out my house tour vlog here.
In general, buying a house is more financially advantageous because it helps you build equity instead of just losing your rent money every month.
4. Invest in stocks.
As the saying goes, make your money work for you.
Investing in stocks is one good way of making your profit grow although it involves a lot of strategizing and some financial expertise. For newbies (like me), I suggest you check on investment plans offered by final and insurance companies. Most of them have detailed reports on how they use your funds including your projected income in X months, money movements — all those aside from its health insurance benefit.
5. Get an additional diploma.
While you invest for your future, it’s also best to invest on yourself. Earning an extra cap helps you gain specialized knowledge to advance in your field. Whether it’s a masters degree or an additional skill certificate, your goal is to know more about what you love doing so you can do it better (and of course make more money out of it).
The Main Point
You see, saving up for the future does not necessarily mean buying cheaper or just simply spending less so you can save more. In the real league, investment is not just about stocks —it’s also about making purchases that can appreciate in value over time. Again, example is buying a house. It’s something that not only secures your access to your own home, but also gives you the option to convert to cash later on should you decide to sell or lease out.
Investment also comes in other forms such as luxury, top of the line pieces like a vintage bag, a rare jewelry or a painting by a famous artist. These are some of the things that can sell for a much higher price in the future.
A bit of caution though, this shouldn’t be a license for you to splurge. Don’t make a purchase if it will just burden you with more debt.
Second takeaway is to spend strategically. It helps if you get a financial tracker to help you monitor your expenses. It can be an app or you can just create your own Google sheet and update it regularly. This will help you assess which expenses you can cut down, what items do you spend the most funds etc.
And that’s it, I hope we can find time to make more and be more this new year! Good luck building wealth guys!