We have all just witnessed one of the best economic decades in the United States. From 2010 thru 2019, the average annual return of the S&P 500 is north of 15%. Those are the best returns since the 1800’s!! …And what do you have to show for it? Debt on your credit cards, student loans, vehicles, house, and oh yeah…those pesky medical bills. It’s time to wake up. It’s time to set some real money goals in 2020. The sun is shining; it’s time to make some hay.
Money Goals: What You Should Be Doing in 2020 and Beyond
I’m not talking about New Year’s resolutions here. This isn’t about starting to save your change in a jar or paying off your $2,000 credit card. I’m talking about a suck-it-up real life change here.
Because let’s be real. We’re living in the absolute best economic times this country has ever seen! And what are the majority of us doing with it?
…We’re using the extra money to buy more crap on credit…
- Instead of a $10,000 vehicle with $150/month payments, we decided to splurge and buy that brand new $40,000 one that has $500 monthly payments.
- Instead of paying off the student loan as fast as possible, we’ve told ourselves that it’s “good debt” and are just paying the minimum payments.
- And, instead of being content in our home that suited us just fine, we decided to build a brand new house (you know…instead of paying down our other debts).
Times are good and money is flowing, but that doesn’t mean that we should just give ourselves bigger payments because we can afford it.
Why am I being so tough on you about this?
At this point, you might be slunken down in your chair, feeling like your dad just yelled at you for staying out hours past your curfew. Sorry about that. But, just like your father, I’m upset because I care. I want to see everyone succeed financially – and it seems like it’s more possible now than ever!
Here’s what’s coming for all those people that are using their excess cash to purchase more stuff on credit:
- In a couple years, the economic growth will dry up – it’s just part of the natural cycle
- The stock market will dive, jobs won’t be as easy to find, and people might find themselves earning 70% (or less) than they used to during the current good times
- Payments on their credit cards, student loans, cars, and their house will be too much to manage
- Either they’ll have to work extra jobs to take care of the mess, or they’ll have to file for bankruptcy…
The results of the economic shift will be devastating.
And, you can either choose to be one of “those people” that I just outlined above, or you can make a stance today and say, “No! I’m not doing that to myself or my family. I’m going to make the change now while I can.”
I desperately hope you choose the second option, because I believe there’s still time (in this good economy) to correct a financial mess. It’s time to make some money goals.
Want to start making a change?
Want to start digging your way out of debt and actually having cash in the bank for the next opportunity that comes around?
And it’s time.
Jobs are everywhere right now. If you don’t think you’re getting paid enough or if you think the chances of a promotion are slim, find a new company! Nearly every company out there is looking to hire more people because business is booming and they simply need the help. They’re looking for YOU!
If you truly want to make a change in your financial life and you feel like your job is part of the problem, it’s probably time… Go find a new one. I bet you’ll be surprised at the awesome opportunities out there.
Side Hustling Your Way to More Money
We all need 7-8 hours of sleep every day. Then our day job takes up another 10.
But…what are we all doing with the other 6-7 hours?
- Social media scrolling?
Of course, we all have some important stuff to do within those 6-7 hours (like raising kids, making meals, maintaining our homes, getting groceries, etc.), but the point is…we can definitely create some free time in there.
“Free time to do what?” you might ask….
Free time to make even more money than you do at your day job!
Ever since the internet came into existence, people have been finding infinite ways to make more money. Via…
- Buying and selling
- Freelance writing
- Online tutoring
- Social media manager
- Becoming a virtual assistant
- And so many more options!
The options are seemingly endless.
Beyond the options above, you could simply ask for a raise at work, find a high-paying part-time job, or just start selling a bunch of stuff that you never use anymore! If you set your mind on making more money, you can absolutely do it!
2) Cut Out the Crap
Alright, so you’ve explored ways to earn more money. That’s just one side of the equation. The other side is all about your expenses.
What is it that you’re spending your money on each month?
- Is it essential?
- Does it actually bring you joy?
- Or, are you just spending the money because that’s what you’ve always done (and it’s easier to keep things the same than to actually change!)??
When I got mad about my financial situation a few years ago, I laid out all my expenses on a piece of paper…and my eyes nearly started popping out of my head…
- I was paying WHAT for a cell phone plan??
- Since when did my car insurance get so expensive?
- $600 in food each month? I was only a single guy…why so much??
You might not believe it, but I went line item by line item and did whatever I could to get each spend item down.
- I called the phone company and asked for a discount…otherwise I told them I’d switch providers
- I called the insurance company and did the exact same thing
- My grocery habits got analyzed to death. How could I actually eat healthier and pay less in groceries?
The results were astounding. I thought I was frugal before…but after this exercise I was able to save hundreds of dollars each and every month. All because I simply started paying attention and made a few changes.
How would you like to save hundreds of dollars each month? You might even save thousands! If you’re sick of being broke and instead want to live a wealthy and carefree life, I’d recommend making some radical changes. If you’re serious, check out this post… 10 Extreme Tips to Cut Your Spending in Half.
Your life will never be the same.
Don’t want to negotiate every bill? BillCutterz will do it for you. They’ll likely save you money, and you’ll only pay them if they do. Talk about a no-risk proposition!
It holds so many of us back.
At first, we think it’s great…
- “We only need to put how much down?”
- “And it’s only $200 a month?”
- “Dang…we could fit that into our budget! Let’s do it!”
“We have the thing we wanted and we still have cash to spare at the end of the month. It’s great!”
But then…we do it 3-4 more times over the next couple years. Suddenly, our cash flow is next to nothing. We look great, but we know that one little blip in the economy could ruin us completely.
“How did we get here? What happened? I thought we were doing pretty good!…”
- It eats away our current cash flow
- It kills our ability to save money
- And, it hand-cuffs us from investing in the future
If you’re serious about making some money goals, it’s time to just get out… Get rid of that debt. You won’t regret it.
So How Do You Do It? How Do You Get Out of Debt?
- First, you’ve got to list out your debts (I recommend laying them out smallest to largest).
- Then, you’ve got to figure out how much you can earn this month, and how little you can spend.
- Third, save up $1,000 and put it aside – this is your emergency fund to keep you from getting into more debt
- Finally, bookmark this post and build you own debt snowball.
- It will show you all your debts
- It will tell you how long it will take to pay it all off
- AND, it will show you if you can get out faster by cutting your costs or earning more money
It’s an amazing tool that has helped thousands of people. And now, it’s your turn! It’s time to make a real life change and get out of debt!
4) Let Your Money Start to Work For You Instead of Against You
If you’re really serious about money goals, then you shouldn’t just be thinking about cutting your bills and getting out of debt. You should take your thoughts and dreams to the next level…
Letting your money work for you… instead of you constantly working for it.
So how do you do this? How do you start making money with money?
Yeah, I know, this seems to be obvious, but it’s not always so easy. Once you cut your expenses, get out of debt, and save up a healthy emergency fund, it can be easy to pump the breaks and have a little ‘you’ time… You know, buying a few fun things here and there, which might put you at a financial stand-still for a while.
It’s not a bad thing to celebrate your victories, but don’t take your eye off the prize.
- You’re out of debt
- You’ve got the ability to save up a bunch of your positive cash flow each month
- So, be sure to start saving up for some future investments
Second, Invest in What You Know
Some of the best passive income ideas are:
- Investing in single family rental properties
- Putting your money into dividend yielding stocks
- Becoming a part owner of a business (as an angel investor)
- Starting your own business and making it passive
There are plenty of other ideas as well. The point here though, is to actually invest in something that you know something about.
I have always been interested in real estate, so it wasn’t a major leap for Liz and I to buy a single family house and rent it out. We’ve been doing this successfully for four years as a matter of fact. The income is great, the hassle factor is low, and I’m pretty sure we’ll add some more units to our portfolio in the future.
- If you like business, invest in business.
- If you’re a stock guru, go for the dividend income.
- And if you like beauty products, you could even join a multi-level marketing company and give that a go (the changes of becoming super-rich and working little are slim-to-none. BUT some individuals have become VERY successful.)
Third, Re-Invest Again…and Again…and Again
Our rental property earns roughly $10k a year. It’s going to take us about 10 years for this money to grow into enough to buy a second rental property.
- BUUUUT, once the cash from the second rental property is coming in, it’ll only take us about 5 years to buy the third.
- …Then just 3.5 years to buy the fourth.
- …Then just 2 years to buy the fifth!
And you know what? The rental income just gets crazy from that point on.
If you find a passive income investment that works for you, stick with it and put as much cash back into that investment category as possible. Financial success isn’t about knowing a ton about many different financial investments. It typically comes down to doing one thing really well, and then repeating it again and again for decades.
Don’t make your money goals complex. Wealth often isn’t nearly as sexy as people think it needs to be.
What Are YOUR Money Goals?
So what about you? Do your money goals align with what we’ve laid out above?
- If so, then you’re probably well on your way to wealth.
- If not…then it might be time to re-evaluate your future plans.
How are you doing with your money goals? What is your next step in the wealth process?
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.