Julia D. – Long Beach Polytechnic High School

The Road to a Stable Future

The time is now to make a difference and make your dreams come true. The future is there to think about and question whether it will be financially stable or not. Some families depend from paycheck to paycheck. Others have it more worrisome when they take care of more than one generation in one household. For example, a huge amount of time and money is spent taking care of grandchildren or an elder while taking care of your own. Tomorrow is not promised. Anything could happen that could ruin the stability in your life right now. Life can be quite expensive whether it’ s one more dollar on Girl Scout cookies or having to pay for hospital bills from a car accident. Every little cent matter because it can have a major effect. People usually do not have an action plan in case of emergencies, typically formed through saving and setting financial goals. There are ways to prevent your money from disappearing and causing negative thoughts.

The best way to achieve success in having financial stability is by saving. It is an incredibly difficult thing to do when motivated to be happy in the moment, but it is guaranteed to be worth it. If you have more money, do not spend it, save it. It causes stress and does not let you have a peaceful mindset when you are out of money. A good way to know whether or not you have saved enough is if your savings is enough to last you six whole months to a year. When making purchasing decisions, think about the future and then think about it again by keeping in mind whether it is necessary or if you just want it. Remember, to succeed, it takes persistence, failure, sacrifice, disappointment, hard work, discipline, and dedication. It will take time to be financially independent but it is worth not having to deal with financial issues all at once in the future. Look out for your retirement income filled with pensions, social security, and more savings. Your retirement income will help you have a relaxed time of rest where you can travel or simply spoil your grandchildren with presents. Balance the income you have now by keeping a close eye on how much your spending versus how much you are saving. Use the rate of return when investing. The rate of return is when you invest and get more than what you saved. There is a rule called the Rule of 72 that calculates and assures you when your money will double. It is 72 divided by the interest rate given on your investment. That will equal to the number of years you will have to wait till your money doubled. Take it from someone who knows what they are doing, an incredulously wealthy man named Warren Buffet once said, “Do not save what is left after spending, but spend what is left after saving.” Prepare for the unexpected. It may be car repairs, home repairs, appliance repairs, or even a job loss. Be ready for whatever may come next.

Beware of the future but also be aware of the future. There is inflation to come, and over the years, it has been gradually rising. Ignore the material items available for purchase that can only give you instant gratification. Usually, it does not last long and is bought through credit. When using credit, have a goal of your number being from 700-8000 rather than 300-499, which you should really avoid. That dream credit gives you the lowest interest rate which means paying less money. Taxes are on everything so get used to how the price tag of things is not the actual price. It is more than that. Also, through tempting, when there is a discount, buy what you need. Just because you would have saved a lot if you bought it does not mean that you should buy it at all. Based on the baby boomers after World War I, 65% of people work past 65 and do not retire. That is mainly because 50% of them do not have anything saved for retirement. Elderly women are typically broke 5 years after their husband’s death. These people are not getting their pensions or their social security money so they are forced to move in with their family. It is best for you and your future to save and grasp a life of your own that you can financially handle.

Before you go out now and spend your money, think about whether you need it or not. It is good to treat yourself but not so much that it will damage you later on. The longer you wait to save, the more money you will have to put away later and if you do not end up putting away money to the side, it is more money that you spend. Have a vision on where you want to be in the future and set goals on how to get there. It is possible and you can do it. Plan wisely.