Setting Goals for Good Personal Finance

What are your goals?

Setting goals is an important part of your personal finance plan. Goals can be divided into four unique categories that are relatively general in nature. These categories are short term goals, intermediate term goals, long term goals and life goals.

Short Term Personal Finance Goals –

These short term goals are most commonly the things that you want to have accomplished within a single year. These things may include taking a family vacation, beginning to invest money into your retirement plan, donating money to a charity, putting savings into your emergency fund, moving from a smaller apartment into a larger one, purchasing a sought after piece of jewelry o a new wardrobe, joining a local sports club, paring down your debt, or a number of other small, short term goals that relate in one way or another to your personal financial future.

Intermediate Term Personal Finance Goals –

The intermediate term goals in your life are the things that will take between one and five years for you to accomplish. These goals may include saving enough money to allow you to buy a brand new car, beginning a family, or paying all of your debt off completely.

Long Term Personal Finance Goals –

Long term personal finance goals are the goals that you will be accomplishing at least five years or more down the road. Some of the goals that fall into this category may include saving for your child’s education, starting up your own business, purchasing a home, purchasing a boat, or going into retirement, though there are a number of other goals that fit into this category as well.

Life Goals –

Life goals are personal finance focused goals that do not have a timeframe, primarily because you will probably never completely or fully achieve them. These are not always specifically money driven goals, but they are certainly life altering goals and relate to striving for something better. Some money driven life goals may include “Make more money” Or “grow my savings”, since these goals have no specific end or time frame.

As you begin to think about your own personal finance goals, you should try to put consideration into which of these categories each of the goals fits into. Fit all of your goals into the short term, intermediate term and long term categories, and then look at how your goals are categorized. You want to have an even number of goals in each category, rather than focusing too heavily on the now, or too heavily on the future. You should also make sure to have goals that do not require money, because not everything has to be material. But when it comes to planning for the future, having clear cut goals for your personal finances is a smart move and can help to ensure that you have your needs met financially throughout your life, no matter what obstacles are thrown at you, or how your needs change over time.

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