How to financially plan for life events is a tough subject to discuss. Discussing finances and financial planning can create undue stress and strain on relationships.
Money is a difficult thing to talk about. Even thinking about it can cause anxiety and stress for some people. However, proper financial planning can help you navigate both the expected and unexpected expenses.
Major life events can often be financially overwhelming. With the right plan and budget in place, they can be manageable. Learning how to financially plan for life events will help. This will give you peace of mind and help you manage your money more effectively.
How to Financially Plan For School
Pursuing higher education is one of the larger life events and expenses you’ll face. You need to have a plan in place to tackle the bills that come wth pursuing your education.
The first place to begin is to consult your financial aid office. The advisors are trained in navigating the various financial programs available. They’ll offer you a tailored and financially sound plan based on your needs.
Check on and apply for any scholarships that your school offers to cover as many costs internally as possible. Once you’ve secured any school programs, it’s time to expand your search.
Look for local and national scholarships that you qualify for. There are also specific grant programs for adult college students. These options will help lower your total bill.
Whether you are paying the bill for your education directly or through loans, you want to lower the cost. The lower the cost, the less you will be burdened with repaying after graduation.
Additional Costs to Consider in Your Financial Plans
Will you be living on campus or off campus? You may find that expenses could be dramatically lower by living off campus and sharing an apartment or house. Saving a little now could make a larger impact later in life.
If living on campus you will not only bear the cost of housing but also of meal plans. Campus meal plans can certainly make life easier, but they are costly. Do a comparison between the ability of preparing meals at home and eating on campus.
How To Financially Plan For Buying A Home
Being able to own your own home is the dream of many. This life event brings with it a huge sense of pride and accomplishment. However, it is also a costly event with many steps involved.
Before the fun part of searching for a house comes the planning part. Step one is to find out how much house you can afford. Begin by talking with a mortgage specialist at your local bank.
Your mortgage officer or banker will provide you a price range. Just because you qualify to purchase a $500,000 home does not mean that is the best decision. Make a list of all monthly expenses including your mortgage. This list will help you determine what you feel you can comfortably handle.
After you know what is in your price range, you can be sure to only look at those houses you will definitely be able to bid on.
In the months leading up to the actual purchase, it’s imperative that you begin saving as much as possible. There is more spending involved in buying a house than the sticker price.
You will have expenses related to the closing. These include the commission to the real estate agent, the inspections, closing costs, and various other fees.
Owning a home also brings with it a responsibility for maintenance. You will want to create a budget to save for these maintenance expenses. One thing I suggest is maintenance agreements for major items.
These include your heating/air conditioning unit(s), pest control, pool service if you have a pool, and other expenses. You want to make sure you have the cash available for these costs.
How To Financially Plan For Having Children
If you decide that you would like to start a family, discussing your financial plans is important.. The reality is that families, especially kids, are expensive. Remember to create a budget and stick to the budget to cover expenses.
In reality, financial security and being 100 percent debt-free isn’t a possibility for the majority of people. That doesn’t mean your hopes and dreams of having kids are impossible, it just means you have to get creative.
For example, you should try to avoid accumulating any new debt when starting a family. When it comes to existing debt, get it paid down as much as possible in advance. Develop a budget you can easily stick to for future payments.
Plan to cook at home and make dining out a special treat. I’ll admit I do not clip coupons. But I am a believer in shopping on sale.
Learn how to shop seasonally for your family. I buy summer clothes in the fall when they are on sale. I buy winter items when the spring and summer collections come out.
When there are buy one get one sales on grocery items I need I make sure to stock up. These are things that have helped me save money over the years.
How to Financially Plan For Emergencies
Life events you aren’t expecting can often be the most impactful, both on you personally and financially. Emergencies come in many different forms: personal loss, natural disasters, mechanical, career, etc.
Whatever shape they take, they often come unexpectedly. It is easy to panic when this happens. By being preparing and financially planning these emergencies are just a slight bump in the road. Creating an emergency fund will definitely help.
We like to keep three to six months of pay in a separate emergency account. This way if an emergency comes up we will be prepared.
Planning To Retire And Be Financially Secure
Many workers look forward to the day of their retirement for decades. When you are new to the work place retirement seems light-years away. It’s not something you want to worry about right now.
Start contributing to your retirement as quickly as possible. Learn about the various options and how planning now for your financial health later is critical. Talking with a financial planner, your accountant, or your company’s HR manager will help you navigate your options.
Ready for Retirement?
If you are nearing retirement, these tips will help you secure your financial future.
Determine the amount in your retirement and investment accounts. Doing this early will ensure that you have sufficiently planned for your retirement. Meeting with your financial team yearly helps keep a handle on your entire retirement picture.
Begin working on a budget. Once you have a complete picture, you can begin working on a budget. Your budget may include contributing more to your retirement or investment accounts. The best thing you can do is to make sure you have enough saved to live comfortably post-retirement.
Financially Planning Ahead For Travel
Traveling more is often on people’s bucket lists. Whether they’re young or old, people want to experience the world.
Travel is also something that creates lasting memories and becomes a major life moment. However, depending on where you’re going and what you plan to do while there, travel can get expensive. But that shouldn’t stop you from venturing to the places you want to experience.
While last-minute getaways are fun and spontaneous, they also leave little to no time for saving. This is why you should plan your vacations as far in advance as possible.
Planning for travel gives you time to save money and search for travel deals and options. Don’t forget to think about vacation rentals versus hotels.
Financially planning now takes the stress and anxiety out of life’s financial curve balls. Even though money is hard to talk about for many people, in the long run proper financial planning is freeing.
Take the steps now to ensure your financial well-being. It will make navigating life events easier, you’ll become the master of your money rather than money becoming the master of you.