Follow these three 2020 financial goals for the financial future you deserve this year
It’s a new year and that means a lot of us will be making New Year's resolutions…
and then breaking them about three weeks later.
Why do we do it every year? Why do we plan on self-improvement when we know we aren't going to keep the resolutions? Is there a way to keep your resolutions and goals?
It's not that we don't want to make a change or that we're weak or undisciplined. It's that we don't have someone there to challenge us and keep us on target.
But this year can be different. 2020 can be the year you keep your financial goals because I'm going to be there to challenge you. I've made it my goal this year to interact more with you, the community here on the blog. I'll be asking more questions, helping with more strategies and will be there to keep you on your goals.
I’m going to be adding a lot more great personal finance videos to the YouTube channel this year including a weekly Q&A video to answer your questions about beating debt, saving more and reaching your financial goals.
I’m excited about reaching the community on a whole new level through these videos. Click through to subscribe to the channel so you don’t miss a single video.
Why Everyone Needs to Make Three Financial Goals
I was recently playing around with some statistics, because that’s the kind of guy I am, and I found that the Average American household owes over $50,000 in debt. That’s almost as much as the annual income and doesn’t include mortgage debt.
Americans spend one in every five dollars they make just to pay off debt. That leaves about four grand to save a year which is nowhere near enough to pay for retirement.
If you don't make a change now, if you don't make these three financial goals in your 2020 resolutions, you'll never be able to reach the financial future you deserve.
So what are the three financial goals we'll be targeting this year?
- Beating debt
- Making more money
- Making your money work for you
I know, you've probably seen these goals before. Maybe you've even made them but they were too vague to really mean anything.
This year, we aren't just going to be making vague New Year's resolutions. We're going to look at each of these three goals with step-by-step strategies and finding new ways to look at them.
We're also going to be looking at how the three goals can work together to make an even bigger change. You can try paying off debt but wouldn’t it be easier if you had some extra cash to do it? You can make extra money but you’re not going to get as far if your money isn’t working for you.
As you watch the video, don't just make your goals in your head. Actually write them down on a piece of paper. This is going to make them real and easier to keep on track.
So let's get started.
Make 2020 the Year You Beat Your Debt
So first our goal for beating debt. This doesn't mean you have to pay off all your debt. That would be unrealistic for most people in just a year.
Beating your debt means taking control with a debt payoff plan. It means knowing where your money is going, how you got into debt and having a way out.
First thing is to write out all your monthly debt, how much you owe and the interest rate on each. Then you want to rearrange each debt so the highest interest rates are on top. You need to make minimum payments each month on all your debt but we’re going to find $100 a month to make extra payments on these first high-interest debts.
This is called the debt avalanche method and it will save you thousands in interest. By paying down those high-interest debts faster, you’ll save money every month.
How are you going to find that extra $100 a month to pay off debt? Two words, spending challenge.
I want you to pick one thing from your budget each month, something you can cut out of your budget like eating out or movies or whatever. Then you’re going to go on a one-month spending challenge on each where you don’t spend any money on it. Setting a short one-month goal makes it easier than just trying to quit spending completely.
You’ll be amazed at how much you really don’t miss some of these things that weigh down your budget and it will make it easier to cut down even when you go back to spending on them.
Making More Money in 2020 is Going to be Easier than You Think
Our next 2020 financial goal is going to be to make more money. There are dozens of easy side hustle ideas, things you can do in just a few hours a week to make extra cash. We’re not talking about starting a whole new business and working your ass off, just putting in a few hours a week to make another few hundred dollars a month.
Your best bets for making extra cash are probably going to be freelancing and self-publishing. You’ll make money faster in freelancing but I love self-publishing because it’s almost completely passive. You can write a book within a few months and it will produce a hundred or two every month for years.
You can freelance just about anything from tutoring to design, internet research or just being a virtual assistant. Hourly pay varies from about $8 to well over $100 an hour.
I already share my monthly income and experience with side-hustle ideas on another blog but will be posting here regularly as well.
The Ultimate Financial Goal, Make Your Money Work for You
The ultimate financial goal, what all the others should be leading to, is to make your money work for you. It does no good to pay off your debt or to make more money if you're not getting something long-term out of your money.
That means investing your money so that it grows and provides you the financial future which you've always dreamed.
There's no better time to start investing or to up your investing savings. The 2018 tax cuts are going to be a boon for businesses. Lowering their tax rate from 35% to 21% and giving away all kinds of other bonuses. If you’re not investing your money to be an owner of these companies, then you’re not getting as much as you could out of the tax cuts.
Businesses are going to be bringing back billions of dollars from overseas profits and most of that is going to go directly to investors through dividends and share buybacks. I want you to get some of that money so start putting at least a hundred dollars into an investing account each month. Now that’s still not really enough to plan for retirement but it will get you started and will start putting your money to work.
I’ll be creating videos for each of these goals all year so please click the subscribe button above so you don’t miss any of them. You can turn your finances around, you can make 2020 the year you beat your financial goals.
About the Author
Joseph Hogue is a financial expert and investment analyst. After serving in the Marine Corps, he started his career investing in real estate before becoming an investment analyst for some of the largest private investors. He's appeared on Bloomberg and on CNBC as an investment expert and has published ten books in personal finance. Now he helps investors reach their financial goals and invest in the stock market with some of the same advice he used when working for the rich.