Financial Planning for Singles

You may find that lots of financial planning advice is aimed at couples and families. But what about if you’re single? What if you’re happy staying single for the foreseeable future?

Don’t worry, we have some good financial advice just for you.

The goal of financial planning—regardless of your past, current, or future relationship status—is fiscal security, independence, and flexibility. In general, you can do this by living within your means, eliminating debt, building an emergency savings fund, saving for the future, and keeping a vigilant eye on your credit score.

Now let’s get more specific.

Save for retirement. Social Security benefits will meet a smaller and smaller portion of each successive generation’s retirement fund needs. So, you shouldn’t count on the government to meet your financial needs in retirement, and you can’t afford to put off saving for retirement on the chance you find a partner who’s already done the saving for you. Always take advantage of any offered matching contributions from employers, with a total retirement savings target of 15% of your salary, at least.

Investigate insurance options. The primary purpose of life insurance is to provide replacement income for anyone who depends on you. If you don’t have children or other family members who rely on your income, you can safely purchase a term life insurance plan that only needs to pay for anticipated funeral expenses. Disability insurance is important regardless of dependents. If you were injured or became sick and were unable to perform your job, disability insurance would replace a percentage of your salary, depending on policy type and terms. You can receive disability insurance through your employer, but it’s smart to carry your own policy that will stay with you if you leave an employer.

Put your estate and affairs in order. There may come a time when you will need to depend on others to make financial and health decisions for you. You might assume this only happens at a late age in life, but an accident that leaves you incapacitated could happen at any time. Legally identifying a health care proxy (or durable medical power of attorney) and a durable power of attorney for financial and legal matters will ensure your wishes are carried out in the event you are incapacitated. A will is important in appointing guardians for any children and naming beneficiaries for property and asset distribution. You should also list beneficiary designations on your retirement accounts and life insurance policy.

Identify your dream life and financial milestones. One way to ensure you attain your financial goals and live your best life is to make plans that don’t depend on others. Be specific in the life you want, and don’t be afraid to think big and reach far! Now plan out what it will take for you to get there. This way, you won’t be held back wishing that someone else would fund your dreams!

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