Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Fun with Finances

Today I met with my financial advisor. I almost feel silly saying such a thing. What gal in her mid-20s has a financial advisor? Well, that'd be me.

Somewhere along the way I've learned to be fairly financially responsible. I buy things I want, I make very few impulsive purchases, and I like to save for big trips and other fun things. Oh, and I pay the bills.

Last year I realized that it made so much more sense to take the money I was saving and put it into accounts that will earn much higher interest than my regular bank accounts. I honestly don't know much about the ins and outs of mutual funds and stocks and bonds and things of the like. But I do trust the guy that handles my accounts to tell me what I need to know in a way that makes sense. Thus, I have a Roth IRA for my retirement savings, some mutual funds for my long-term but needed before retirement savings (like new car or new house money), and my basic money market for the good ole emergency fund and fun, easy-to-access money. I feel pretty good about it.

I say all this because I want to encourage any of my dear readers to take some time to do the research and make sure you're being smart with your money. I can't say I've got it all figured out. I don't live by some strict budget I've developed in Excel, although I do have a pretty good grasp on my monthly expenses, what I like to save monthly, and how much I can spend on fun things. I certainly don't have any great investing advice. But my advisor guy is always saying how smart it is to start making some investments in your 20's. If nothing else, the interest I earn on my money market is twice what I was getting at my bank savings account. Who's going to turn down extra cash for just having money sitting there?

Go. Invest wisely. Reap the rewards when you have what you need for an emergency/new car/down payment on a home/trip to Europe. I'm confident you'll be glad you did.


Sarah said...

Hey, Melanie-- this is Sarah Hinton! I've been reading your blog for quite some time, but this post made me want to reach out and comment for once!

My grandmother invested money about 20 years ago, two accounts for each of the 4 granddaughters. The first account was a college fund-- which ended up paying for my tuition, rent, and most living expenses. I had to work my last year, but it was okay! And the other account is my "starting out" money that I'll get when I turn 25. She intended this to be used on a new car, or a down payment for a house, etc. I'm already planning ways I'll get to use this money-- as a teacher, it'll be a HUGE help to me!

Investing is totally a great way to go; managing my money has never been a strength of mine, but I'm working on it! Going to a financial advisor is a great idea... and once I actually make some money, I just might do that!

db said...

I'm not knocking the finances; the problem is that you call them "fun." I tell you what's fun: you, me, and a dance floor baby! Hehe. Or you, me, and a meal. Or a coffee. Or just lying around. That's always fun...