|1.||Know what you're investing for.|
|2.||Make paying yourself a priority.|
|>||Make Your Money Work for You|
|>||Invest Early and Often|
|3.||Make tax-smart investments.|
|4.||Diversify your portfolio.|
Where they are now:Carlos and Maria are newlyweds with very little money to spare. Maria is a schoolteacher and Carlos is a construction worker who plans to become an independent contractor in a few years, running his own business. They know they want to buy a home and start a family, but every month, something comes up that prevents them from putting money aside. They haven't even thought about their retirement or how the addition of children will impede their ability to save. They are hopeful that once Carlos' business gets started it will provide the extra income they need to invest for retirement.
What they might do differently:It's important that Carlos and Maria begin putting money aside right away. As hard as it is to invest today, it will become even harder to reach their goals without giving their investments the opportunity to grow over time. Instead of focusing on the total amount they'll need in the future, it may be easier to zero in on how much they can put aside each week. Evaluating their expenses and scaling back is the first step. Can they forego eating out once a week or rent a movie once in a while? Once they figure out how to shave down their expenses, the next step is to commit to actually setting aside that money. Contacting an investment company to set up an account and automatic investment plan is a great way to start. Also, as they get raises, they can increase the amount of their monthly contributions to their plan.