With amazing deals on everything on your holiday shopping list literally hours away, I want to encourage everyone to take a few moments to consider paying yourself first before the shopapalooza begins. Here’s a few ideas:
- Set up an Acorns account. Acorns allows you to link your accounts and it’ll automatically round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and deposit that “spare change” in your Acorns account. Acorns also has robo-investing options so you can put your money to work for you. Take it one step further and set up auto withdrawals from your account on top of the rounding up!
- Take half of what you were going to spend tomorrow and deposit it into your Roth IRA! I know, I’m asking a lot…but beyond 401K matching (aka free money), there’s no more powerful tool for saving for retirement than a Roth IRA. With a max annual contribution of $5500 per person, odds are you’ve still got room to invest a few hundo. If you’ve already maxed your Roth IRA for the year, consider a low cost index ETF (I like SPY) in your brokerage account.
- Set up an auto invest option going forward. Lots of options here…Your bank can move money directly to your savings account for you through auto transfers. Want to invest? Most brokerage accounts will allow you to set up automatic investments in mutual funds. Make these auto investment dollars part of your budget and you won’t even be thinking about it every month, it’ll just automatically happen. If the stock market isn’t your cup ‘o tea, consider non-traditional crowdfunding options and see what this realm has to offer. I just set up automatic investments into an e-REIT through Fundrise. I’ve also read good things about peer-to-peer lending sites such as Lending Club.
Look, I know the holiday season is all about giving, but who is going to help you when you’re in a pinch? Ideally you can help yourself. By all means, hook your friends and family up, but pay yourself first before you empty out your coffers tomorrow on the hot deals this Black Friday!
Please see my disclaimer and consult a financial professional before making any investment as everyone’s situation is different. Let me know if you have questions on any of these topics. I wish you a joyous holiday season!