Wants Versus Needs
It’s fun to imagine yourself in a new home. Extra bedrooms, a home theater and a pool all sound great until you consider the real cost to your savings. Think about how much more you could end up spending in monthly mortgage costs and taxes before you make a decision to buy more house than you really need. Instead of upgrading, add the money you would have spent on higher mortgage payments to your retirement savings. Having enough money once you retire is a worthwhile objective.
Of course you want to give your children the best possible life experiences that you can afford. But before you spend thousands of dollars on a family vacation at an expensive distant getaway, consider whether your children would have just as special of an experience camping at a nearby state park or taking a road trip. The money you save by scaling back the expense – but not the fun – could be used to boost your child’s college savings.
And that goes for other activities, too. Shop around for the best deals on your child’s music, dance, or sports lessons and add he savings to a college fund.
Review Your Plan
The success of any spending plan rests with your commitment to the goals you’ve set for yourself. When you conduct your annual financial review, make sure that you’re not only on track to reach your established goals but that any new goals you’ve incorporated into your plan are realistic and affordable. An increase in your income shouldn’t inflate your lifestyle if doing so would thwart your objectives or make them harder to achieve.
*Crane Investment Services Advisors are registered representatives of CUNA Brokerage Services, Inc. Representatives are registered, securities sold, advisory services offered through CUNA Brokerage Services, Inc. (CBSI), member FINRA/SIPC, a registered broker/dealer and investment advisor, which is not an affiliate of the credit union. CBSI is under contract with the financial institution to make securities available to members. Not NCUA/NCUSIF/FDIC insured, May Lose Value, No Financial Institution Guarantee. Not a deposit of any financial institution. CUNA Brokerage Services, Inc. is a registered broker/dealer in all fifty States of the United States of America.