For most of us, a house or a college education are the most expensive things we'll ever buy. And when you're trying to save tens of thousands of dollars for your first house, you need a different budget than when you use to save for a beach trip with your friends.
Here are four tips to save faster and smarter for those big purchases in life!
DETERMINE YOUR TIMELINE
How much time do you have to make money moves? Knowing this is the most important part of budgeting for big expenses.
If you're saving and investing for your child's college costs, you might have 18 years to work with.
If you want to be in your first home by the time you turn 32, you might have just a few years.
If you have more than 5 years until you want to make this big purchase, you can invest some or all of the money in the stock market. Five years is enough of a timeline that you're in the sweet spot; you can reap the benefits of market growth but you have enough time to recover from any market losses.
Less than five years and I wouldn't invest any of my money. Instead, opt for a high yield savings account to tuck your cash away in.
Get clear on the timeline you're working with. From there, we can crunch the numbers on how much to save or invest for your goal.
ALLOCATE ONE STREAM OF INCOME TO IT
If you're part of a two income household, or you're someone with more than one stream of income, it's time to dig into your numbers and reallocate some of that income flow.
Say you work a 9-5, and you walk dogs in the evenings. When trying to budget for big expenses, a great way to stay organized and see major growth is to allocate one entire stream of income towards the goal. In this case, it'd be your dog walking money.
If you make $300 a month from that side hustle, it should all go towards your house fund. Side hustles are a super powerful way to budget for big purchases - you can use them to earn more money, pay off debt, and diversify your income!
If, on top of that, you can save $150 from your 9-5 job to the house fund as well, you've got $450 a month to put towards your goal!
SEPARATE THE MONEY INTO ITS OWN ACCOUNT
Keeping money separated is one of my favorite small money tricks that pays out hugely.
Humans are remarkable creatures in a lot of ways. And sometimes we're just overgrown monkeys, especially when it comes to thinking long term.
If you've got your vacation fund in the same account as your down payment fund, it's easy for your brain to just see one lump sum of cash and think "Oh this trip to Mexico is about to be Kardashian levels."
Keep your house fund separate from any other savings goals you've got by opening a new high yield savings account for it.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF MONEY TOOLS
Sometimes we can't simply save our way to success. Saving for big purchases may require some outside help.
Take advantage of the financial tools out there to reach your goals! Between using a budget, talking to financial professionals like a real estate agent, or a bank representative, you might find that you qualify for tools you didn't even know existed.
For example, in Texas - FIRST TIME HOME BUYER PROGRAMS.
There are SO many tools out there that can help you grow your money faster. You can absolutely make Cardi B style money moves in your own life by harnessing their power for yourself!