There are several money habits you should outgrow by 30. It's normal for young adults to make money mistakes. Some people max out credit cards, and others spend frivolously and never save a dime. But as we get older, we have to put bad money habits aside. Here are seven bad money habits you should outgrow by 30.
1. Thinking You're Too Young to save for Retirement
Not saving for retirement is one of several money habits you should outgrow. Many 20-year-olds think they're too young to think about investing in their future. Therefore, they put off saving for retirement. But you're never too young to start a retirement account. The earlier you start saving, the more you'll have when you're ready to retire.
2. Carrying Debt from Month-to-month
Some people think credit card debt is no big deal. They ring up their credit cards and only pay the minimum each month. As a result, they carry debt from month to month. This is an expensive habit. Credit card interest rates aren't cheap, and carrying debt results in paying a ton in interest. A better approach is paying off credit card debt in full every month.
3. Asking Parents for Money
Sometimes, you can't avoid asking parents for money. And if you pay your parents back, or only ask for handouts on occasion, there's nothing wrong with this. But if you're constantly going to your parents for money, it's time to evaluate your budget. Maybe you're living beyond your means, or maybe you're managing your money poorly. Whatever the reason, revamp your spending plan and try to handle your own expenses.
4. Not Saving Money
Not only should you be saving for retirement, you should be building your emergency fund. But many young adults think they have their entire life to worry about saving. However, if you don't develop a savings routine early, it might be harder to start later in life, especially after you've taken on additional expenses. As a general rule of thumb, save 10% of your paycheck.
5. Using Emergency Funds for Non-emergencies
The money you set aside for emergencies should only be used for this purpose. If you want to take a vacation, save up to buy a house or plan for other expenses, you need a separate savings account. Ideally, you should have about 3 to 6 months worth of income in your emergency fund.
6. Paying Late
Creditors might not report late payments to the credit bureau until you're 30 days past due, but every late payment can result in a late fee, between $30 and $40 depending on the creditor. This adds to your balance. Never pay a bill late. Set up automatic payments or pay statements as soon as they arrive.
7. Not Enough Insurance
You might be young, but this doesn't mean you don't need insurance. Get health insurance, and don't skip disability insurance and renter's insurance. Most importantly, get a term or whole life insurance policy. Even if you're single without children, a life insurance policy can pay for your funeral expenses and any remaining debt.
Taking control of your personal finances demonstrates a measure of responsibility. But don't wait until you're over 30 to get serious about your money. It's time to ditch bad money habits and replace these with good ones. What are other bad money habits to outgrow by 30?