Life as a 20-something year old is full of twists and turns. From graduating college to solidifying your career path, there’s a lot that goes on during this period of 10 years. While you likely have tons of goals such as owning a home, landing your dream job, or maybe even traveling the world, chances are you haven’t put too much thought into your finances.

It’s been said that when we set goals and write them down, we’re much more likely to achieve them. If improving your financial standing is something you’d like to achieve, here are 5 financial goals that you’ll want to actively work on during your 20s.

1. Pay Down Debt

Even in your early 20s, debt is something that you aren’t able to easily avoid. From buying your first car to applying for college loans, it’s all but impossible to make it through your 20s without taking on some form of debt. While debt may be inevitable, this doesn’t mean that you should let it continue to grow. If you’re focused on paying off your debt as soon as possible or want to save money, you’ve likely considered student loan refinancing. Do your research to determine how you can refinance your loans and feel less stressed.

Keep your debt from becoming a lingering problem by working to get out of debt completely. The sooner you’re out of debt, the better off you’ll be when it comes time to make larger purchases in the future, such as a home or a family car.

Paying off all of your debt won’t happen overnight, but you can speed up the process by having a plan and sticking with it. Start paying down your highest interest rate debt first so that less money goes towards interest. This will open up more money to continue to pay off other debt while also setting money aside.

2. Build an Emergency Fund

Most people know about the importance of having a savings account, but if you’re like most people, you have very little or nothing at all saved away in an emergency fund. In fact, 57 million Americans don’t have emergency savings. By building up a well-stocked emergency fund, you’ll have a lot less worries when life decides to throw you a curveball.

We all know that life never goes as planned and bad things tend to happen when you’re least prepared for them. This is why it’s crucial to have an emergency fund. In the event that you lose your job or face an unexpected expense, you can have the assurance that your emergency fund can help you through any tough times. This money acts as a cushion

3. Have Multiple Income Streams

The more ways you have to make money, the better! By having many income streams, it’s much easier to meet your other financial goals. As a young adult, you likely already have a job. If you have some free-time to spare, you can spend a few hours each day making money on the side. Thanks to the Internet, there are all sorts of ways you can make money while sitting at home on the couch or even when you’re on the go. Simple ways to bring in some money online include:

  • Taking surveys
  • Watching videos
  • Posting product reviews
  • Freelancing

With a side gig you can make extra money that you can put into your savings account or towards paying down your debt.

4. Avoid Impulse Purchases

Everyone wants to have the latest and greatest phone, shoes, clothing, and car. But, all of these items come at a serious cost. While you want to look and feel your best and have access to the latest and greatest technology in your younger years, this shouldn’t come at the cost of causing financial issues.

Though it may be hard, avoid impulse purchases and end any bad financial addictions you may have such as making expensive purchases on your credit card or living above your means. Otherwise you’ll find it hard, if not impossible, to save money and to enjoy financial stability.

5. Start Saving For Retirement

In your 20s, retirement seems so far away. While it may seem silly to save for something that’s more than 40 years in the future, the earlier you save, the better off you’ll be when it comes time to retiring and living the life you always dreamed of in your later years. As a rule of thumb, you should be putting about 20% of your monthly income towards retirement. Over the years, compound interest and market growth can greatly increase the total money you have saved for retirement.

It’s even more beneficial to start saving for retirement if your employer offers stock option or a matching program. This gives you even more incentive to put money away to secure your future.

While it may seem impossible to pay off debt, have a savings account, and put money towards retirement, it all comes down to proper budgeting. Don’t fall into the trap of waiting to save for retirement until its way too late. Give your money plenty of time to grow.


Goal setting is crucial, especially when it comes to securing your financial future. As you make your way through your 20s, be sure to keep a few of these goals in mind to begin to prepare yourself for what’s to come in the next few decades.

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