What money advice would you give to your younger self? This is a question I asked my YouTube and Instagram followers/ subscribers, and in today’s blog post I shared the answers I received and my thoughts on the advice they gave.
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What Money Advice Would You Give To Your Younger Self?
I asked my audience over on Instagram and my YouTube subscribers to share money advice that they would give to their younger selves. I received a lot of great pieces of advice, and in today’s blog post I will be sharing the advice received and my opinions of them.
I wrote a blog post last year sharing 18 things I wish I knew about money when I was 18 so you can have a read of the advice I would give my younger self. This post however is not about me, it’s about my audience and what they had to share.
Read on to discover their money advice and see if you resonate with any of the suggestions.
1. Have multiple streams of income
Great advice! When I was younger I only knew one path to financial success, and that was to go to university and get a good job. Once in that good job, work your way up that corporate ladder and your income will rise.
It wasn’t until I read Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki that I discovered there was another way to achieve financial success – by creating multiple streams of income.
2. Don’t get a storecard, buy a house
I got myself into a lot of financial trouble at university by taking out storecards from TopShop and Miss Selfridge. If only someone had sat down and explained to 18 year old me that those storecards are not free money, they are debt, debt that will eventually need to be repaid, and with interest!
I wasted a lot of money over the years on consumerism, and in hindsight, all the thousands squandered over the years probably could have been put towards my house deposit.
3. Be aware of where your money goes
In other words, create a budget. Creating a conscious spending plan for your money and being intentional with where you allocate it, will make your money work more effectively for you. If you don’t already have a budget in place, download my zero-based based budget template to get started.
The younger you are when you get started with budgeting, the easier it becomes, and before you know it, it will become second nature to you.
4. Save, save, save and invest. Don’t waste money trying to keep up with trends because everything is subject to fast change.
This is very true. What was trendy a year ago, is not trendy today. Fast fashion is a vicious cycle, and trying to keep up with it will burn through your money.
I look back in embarrassment at many of my past trendy outfits, and the reality is I’ll probably do the same five years from now. In knowing this now, I don’t place as much importance and value on these things as I did when I was younger.
5. Do not take that credit card at uni
I definitely agree with this. The way these banks prey on young impressionable people is actually unfair and should be illegal. I remember walking into a room at freshers fair and being approached by different bank representatives trying to get me to open a bank account with them.
In my head, all I heard them say was free money, free money so I jumped at the opportunity. All the free sweets and cakes they were offering to those that signed up made it even easier for me to make my decision – I have such a sweet tooth!
6. Invest your money, don’t just save it
This is an important point! Saving you money will only take you so far, you need to invest your money to build wealth. This is because interest rates on savings are very low, so over the years, you’re not likely to beat inflation which means your money will fall in value.
To illustrate, a loaf of bread today costs £1 on average, whereas 5 years ago it cost £0.75. Saving your money is just the first step, investing is the next and more important step.
7. Don’t spend all your money to impress broke people
Or in other words, don’t try and keep up with the Joneses. This is something a younger me would have needed to hear. Don’t overextend yourself financially to impress anyone (broke or not), because the reality is, it’s only you left to pay off any accrued debt.
We are all responsible for our financial futures so it’s important to be good stewards of whatever resources we have. Don’t waste it all trying to impress others, they don’t care either way. Your financial future is your responsibility so don’t let peer pressure lead you to make decisions that will negatively affect your financial future.
8. Don’t be scared of money, having money doesn’t make you arrogant or an evil person
Our money scripts are the beliefs we have about money, these can positively or negatively impact our relationship with money. If you believe people that have money are bad and evil, then you’re going to subconsciously repel money.
You’ll do things to self-sabotage your income-increasing opportunities because you don’t want to become one of those evil rich people. Money isn’t evil, it’s just a source and a tool that can be used to enrich your life. You deserve to have money and to live an abundant life.
9. Chose jobs that help you learn skills, rather than based on how much money you can make
Great advice! Adding value to yourself is invaluable. When deciding on the next roll you’re going to go for, choose based on which role will increase your value and stretch your skillset.
To be honest, you’ll probably still end up earning more money in the long run. The reason for this is that the more value you add to yourself, the more value you can bring to an organisation.
10 Contribute to your company 401k and get the max match. Establish emergency find based on 6 months of expenses.
The UK equivalent to the 401k is a pension. For years I opted out of company pension schemes because I thought I was too young to be worrying about retirement. What I didn’t realise is that by opting out of these schemes, I was missing out on all the free money my employers would have paid.
Not to mention opportunity cost. I not only missed out on the free money. I missed out on all the money that money would have made me in the stock market thanks to the power of compounding.
Moving on to the second point about an emergency fund, I would have to agree. Unfortunately, 1 guarantee in life is that emergencies will come, how will you prepare financially for them?
If I had an emergency fund a few years ago, I probably would have avoided getting into so much debt.
11. Start now and take your time, i.e. invest, save, start a business
I would have to agree with this point. Where are you rushing to? Whatever your age, do what’s in your heart to do and trust the process. You have to be patient as it’s not going to be an overnight win.
They say it takes 10 years to become an overnight success so commit to your goal and be consistent with it and you’ll get there. Sew, sew, sew and eventually you’ll reap the rewards of your labour, remember, it’s not the same day you plant a seed that you eat its fruit. Take your time and you’ll get there.
12. Don’t eat Mc Donald’s, I wish I’d never eaten there
To be honest I think it would have been too late to tell my younger self this – the damage was already done before I hit my teens.
If I was to sit down and do the maths on how much I’ve spent on McDonald’s and junk over the years, it’s probably going into the thousands – that’s crazy. Younger me I would tell her, ‘there’s rice at home – eat it!”.
13. Don’t let any 419 boys mess with your bank card
I don’t know if this is still a thing, but back in university and college, this happened a lot. 419 boys, i.e. fraudsters would ask young females to borrow their bank accounts to deposit fraudulent money into them. The female would have to go to the bank and withdraw the money and give it to the guy, the female will then receive a small payment for her services.
Sounds simple on paper, but I knew a few females that did this and were caught by the banks. They consequently had to repay thousands to the banks and were banned for life. It’s not worth it. If a guy asks you to do this profusely say no – just don’t do it.
So these were 13 of the best pieces of advice shared by my Instagram and YouTube audience. What do you think of the advice shared? Do you agree or disagree with these suggestions? Is there any other advice that you would add? Share in the comments section below.
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