The best defense is a good offense.
Scoring more points wins the game, plain and simple. In the game of personal finance, the same is true.
For those looking to score more points, the answer doesn’t always lie in saving or investing more. Instead, it revolves around making sure your financial infrastructure is sound, secure, and well-fortified.
This basic element – securing your financial base – is often overlooked. During times of economic turbulence, people are reminded of the fragility of their personal finances. Sometimes, even for those who think they are well-positioned against market downturns, it is worth revisiting the basics to ensure maximum protection.
The Millennial Money Makeover Milestones are essential elements of a well-built financial foundation. If you don’t follow these, in order, you will find yourself out over your skis – period.
Sure, you can get by for a while – when times are good. As soon as the economic tide shifts though, the cracks will be exposed, leaks will sprout, and you will be kicking yourself for wading in too far.
Mastering the basics: getting out of debt, saving a $3,000 emergency fund, building a slush fund of 3-6 months of your living expenses, and stashing investments for FU money always works.
The beauty of this order of operations is that it sets you up to deploy capital when the economy is contracting. It allows you to scoop up investments at lower valuations. It allows you to score more points. It allows you to play the ultimate defense.