Welcome to your 20s – the start of your life as an adult. You’ve finished school. You may be starting your first job. You already made plans to move out of your parents’ house.
Simply put: you’re finally in control of your money.
So where do you start? What do you need to do to have a fun 20s? Fret not, I got you covered.
Read on for an A+ list of smart things you should have in your 20s to achieve the ultimate financial independence and to experience a fun decade of adulting.
A reliable laptop
Get your 20s started with a nice and reliable laptop. Believe me, investing in a high-performing laptop goes a long way in your career. You will be working online for a long time. So grab a decent laptop you can trust to give you the best result.
A good place
At your 20s, it’s undeniably better to rent a place than to actually buy one. You can also choose to continue living with your family.
And ultimately, it’s your choice.
But listen, nothing beats the feeling of having your own place.
Before you jump the gun in renting a place, make sure that you have enough money to afford the bills.
A bank account
Gone are the days when you have to bring all your cash in your wallet. Being in your 20s calls for the use of a bank. Honestly, you need a bank account for all the changes you will go through in this time. Your payday, your bills, your loans – all of these need the help of a bank account.
And to tell you the truth, it’s fun and easy to have a bank holding and managing your money. It’s also easy to open one. Except for the times you are blacklisted by national consumer-reporting agencies, like ChexSystems because of your ChexSystems score. This happens when you have misused a checking or savings account. For one, if you failed to pay your student loans and other kinds of debt in time.
You can remedy the situation by requesting your report, disputing if there are any errors and paying off debts. You could also ask the creditors to remove the negative information.
Cooking tools & appliances
We know you could easily get your meals at some fast food nearby, but it’s not exactly cheap to always eat out.
So there’s no denying it: you have to feed yourself. To start, buy the appliances and other tools you need to cook at home. You can begin with a few quality pots & pans and work your way in buying more complicated appliances.
TIP: Know that having your own instant coffee maker will help a lot to improve your morning rush (and also your late night work).
A nice wardrobe for work
You also have to invest in your wardrobe, and it doesn’t have to be a lavish upgrade. Simply have decent and sophisticated clothes you can wear at work. Whether you’re looking to get a promotion or land your dream job, it’s important to look presentable.
To all the aspiring travel junkie out there, there is no better time than the time you are in your 20s to take a trip around the world. While it’s not exactly a smart money move, it is the best way to reward yourself.
Plus, your trip doesn’t have to break the bank. Make sure to sign up for fare alerts, travel on off-peak days and look for affordable hostels or vacation rentals.
A word of caution: have enough money to cover the basics. It’s not a fun trip when you become stranded (or starved, or broke) in a foreign country.
Yes, insurance. I know, you may be too healthy, too young to be concerned with something like insurance. But you’re not gonna live forever. At some point, you’re going to get sick one day and need it.
And paying your hospital bill without health insurance is not exactly cheap.
TIP: You can also build an emergency fund as your insurance policy. It can give you peace of mind that you will be covered in the case of a large unexpected expense, like a car accident or illness.