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Financial Planning Lessons I’ve Learned

CPAs & Business Consultants

David Youngstrom
David Youngstrom, CPA President & CEO CPAs & Business Consultants

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Financial literacy is a passion of mine. From an early age, my parents taught me the value of saving and smart money management. Even though I got great advice, I wish I had listened a little closer. On  National Financial Awareness Day, I want to share some tips on financial planning and what I’ve learned along the way.

You’re Never Too Young to Think About Retirement.

Many people, including myself, regret not saving for the future soon enough. Sometimes it is hard to set money aside when you are in a day-to-day grind. But if you save for the future today, that money will make your life better in the long run. If you start saving in your 20s, when you are in your 40s or 50s, you will have more freedom to live the life you want. Starting now makes a huge difference, even if it is just a little bit.

Have a Plan to Follow.

It’s important to ask yourself, “What is my financial plan? How does buying a house or starting a family impact my plan? When do I want to retire? How much should I have saved for emergencies?” Really consider these questions and have conversations with your spouse and family about your goals. Then, once you have a plan in place, stick to it.

Find a Trustworthy Advisor.

Even if you think you don’t have enough money or your situation isn’t complex enough, an advisor can be valuable when planning for retirement. A good advisor can help you find creative and effective ways to save money. The world is constantly changing, and tax rules are constantly evolving. Having an advisor who understands these changes and how they impact your goals can be a game changer.

Share Your Knowledge With Others.

As a parent, I tried to teach my kids as much as I could about finances. It can be through simple methods like teaching them to save money for things they want to buy. Or it can be more complex, like explaining budgets and showing them how to allocate their paycheck so that they are saving and setting aside money for important things. Remember, you can never start too early, and it is never too late.

Take the First Steps.

Taking the first steps in your financial planning journey is half the battle. Once you have a plan in place that aligns with your goals, you need to be disciplined to follow it and save money accordingly. It’s not always easy, but starting now will make the future brighter and better for you and your loved ones. There are many financial planning resources available to help get you started. Watch webinars, listen to podcasts, or read financial planners’ articles to learn best practices. Do what works best for you!

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