I am happy to share that at 28, my net worth is over half a million pesos. That may not be a lot to others considering my age but my earning was delayed due to the following: a) worked at a real job only less than a year after college in order to go to law school b) resumed working as a lawyer again only in 2013. One big pro and I am super grateful: my parents paid for my tuition fees and living expenses up to my graduation until review. After I took the bar, I was on my own and survived on my savings from part-time jobs I did in my undergrad years.
Learn how to budget and stick to it
I learned how to budget in college when while doing research at the library, I stumbled upon several personal finance books and ended up reading them. First, it is important to remember this mathematical equation
Income – Savings = Expenses
When payday comes and before any of us get tempted by all the payday sales, it is good to deduct savings and secure them in your preferred investment vehicle of choice. For savings (emergency fund), I recommend a passbook because it’s such a hassle to withdraw money from. Hey, it works.
Second, for the uninitiated, the rule of thumb is to save at least 20% of your income as savings and then you can spend the rest. However, the viability of this percentage really depends on your monthly income.
I shall write a more detailed post on a recommended budget later.
Track where your money goes
Tracking my spending helped me curb my shopping addiction (waaah!). After working and living in Makati City, Philippines with all its shiny boutiques ( hello greenbelt and glorietta!) for almost 2 years, I found that my savings really took a hit. I was earning quite well but such earnings were eroded by lifestyle inflation and high costs of living.
However, I was unaware of these problems until I started tracking my spending. Several free apps abound to help you track your spending, if you need suggestions, just comment below. 🙂
With the money amassed from making and sticking to a budget and savings derived from reduced expenses, I ended up with spare money for investment. My investment vehicles of choice are stocks and mutual funds.
Investment allocation takes up 10 to 15% of my budget now. Thus, savings 20%+ investment 10-15% makes 30-35% saving rate.
This is just the halfway point towards my first million in another 2-3 years (I’m being optimistic 🙂 ). I recommend periodically calculating what your net worth is. It is a great motivator.
Twenty something lawyer