You might find it challenging to stay on top of multiple financial goals. It’s as if you are being pulled in so many directions all at the same time. Can stretch you out too thin and you will barely accomplish anything. You end up exhausted without anything to show for it. You do not only fall short of your goals but you also tire yourself out for no reason.
This is not to say that you should not plan for several financial priorities in life. If you set your sights only on one goal, you might not accomplish a lot in life. You may not even be able to plan for the things you need. If you only save up for your retirement but fail to pay for your mortgage loan, you end up with a huge monthly payment when you retire.
This is just one example of why you will have multiple financial goals in life. You cannot simply focus on one single item your whole life. That being said, it is not an easy path to take. It is not a walk in the park to try and juggle several goals all at the same time. It can be exciting for some but at the end of the day, it will be a lot of work. Especially as CNBC shares tha the top goal for Americans this 2020 is to pay off debt.
If you want to increase the success rate of reaching your financial goals, there are a few things that can help you. These are financial tips that can help you manage your financial priorities in life. Remember that your situation is unique and what might work for some people would not automatically work for you. Go through the list and see which one applies to your present situation.
Make a list to manage multiple financial goals
One of the first things you need to do is to put together a list of your financial goals. Sounds simple but a lot of people overlook this step. You need to have a list of the things you are trying to juggle all at the same time. It’s possible to try and mentally remember the first few items but this opens you up to missing a few of the things you need to work on,
When this happens, you could end up behind schedule. There could be times as well where it can negatively impact other things you are working on. You might be trying to increase your emergency fund savings but you overlook your credit card payment. When this happens, you can end up with a bigger payment the following month due to interest and other penalties. As a result, you could be forced to use the money intended for your reserve fund and use it to pay for your credit card.
If you have a list, you can simultaneously monitor your financial targets all at the same time. It lowers the chances of overlooking an item on your list. It also helps to put your list where you can easily see it. Consider writing it down and putting that on your table at home, in your fridge, or even on your smartphone.
Create a realistic timeline
There is one key factor when you are trying to multiple financial goals – a timeline. If you create a list of goals without a timeline or an end date to them, what you have are dreams and not goals. This is one of the most important details that distinguish clear goals from a wishlist. You need to make sure that you have this detail when you list down your goals.
Take your housing situation for example where you might be planning to take out a mortgage loan to buy a house. Bloomberg shares that the average age for Americans buying a house is 33 years old. To make that happen, you need to save up for a decent downpayment on the property you want to buy. The idea is that the bigger your downpayment is, the smaller your monthly payment could be.
You need to identify a target date when you want to finally make that big purchase. It does not matter how many months or years in the future that will be. The important thing is that you fix that goal to a realistic date in the future. This can get you moving and planning in the right direction. You now have an idea when you need the money.
Craft your budget based on your timeline
Now that you have a list and end date, you can manage multiple financial goals better when you budget for it. You need to incorporate your goals into your household budget. This will help you ensure that you are consistently putting money aside for your financial targets. One other important benefit of including this in your budget is that you get to make adjustments when needed.
There will be times when you have to move your finances around. It might be because your income was affected by the health crisis. On the other hand, you could also come across some windfall money that you suddenly have a lot of extra funds in your hands. If you do have your targets in your budget, you could end up either getting behind or missing an opportunity.
Manage multiple financial goals with automation
Technology can be a great financial tool if you know how to make the most of it. One of the things that can help you manage your financial goals is automation. You can talk to your bank or check online how you can take advantage of this feature. This helps you make sure that you are able to set aside the money you need to save every month without having to manually transfer funds every single time.
This is also a good idea if you know you have an impulsive buying behavior. The way it works is that your funds are automatically transferred out of your account into your savings or any other account of payment. You are then left with what you can use. It lowers the chances of impulsively using the money to buy the things you want.
Manage impulsive buying behavior
This is one of the things you can manage when automating your finances. It’s because you are only left with a budgeted amount. But remember that automation can help but it is t the root cause of the problem. Your impulsive purchasing behavior needs to be addressed as well. This will help you manage multiple financial goals better.
Remember that getting to the bottom of your impulsive habit might take some time to correct. You need to identify the root cause of what triggers this spending pattern. Once you do that, you need to put a system in place to safeguard your finances. Automation is just one of them. You might also consider deleting y our credit card details from your computers. It makes it a little more difficult to shop online.
Keep your credit card habits in check
Your credit cards are just financial tools at your disposal. Whether you get into serious debt or not is totally up to you. That being said, you need to keep your credit card habits in check. Remember that habits take a long time to form and it also takes a while to correct. But it does not mean that you cannot change for the better.
Other people use their credit cards to their financial advantage. Some are using their credit cards to take advantage of rewards and points. This helps them save money in the end. Some people choose to assign a specific card to a specific expense item at home. This helps them monitor every purchase they make using their statement every month. Remember that your credit card is merely a tool you use to improve your finances and reach your goals.
It sounds challenging to try and aim for multiple financial goals all at the same time but it is doable. You will encounter some hurdles along the way. But make sure you use those situations and learn from them. This will help improve your money management skills to bring you closer to your goals.