6 Money Moves Every Woman Should Make by the Time She's 40
Sure, you’ve got a list of money to-dos a mile long, but other than saving more (and spending less), what other financial goals should you be setting out to accomplish before the big 4-0? We checked in with Kimmie Greene, a consumer money expert for Mint, to help you set your financial agenda.
You Should Automate Everything
Yes, there’s always the occasional situation that still requires you to pay by check, but the future is cashless, which means (if you haven’t already) it’s time to embrace auto bill pay, ladies. Think more than just electricity and cable bills; automate your savings, with an app like Digit, which helps you bulk up your emergency fund a little bit at a time each week.
...And Be Able to Recite Your Credit Score From Memory
Eep, it’s a scary thing to keep tabs on day in and day out, but it’s a critical part of your financial portfolio and one that can have a major impact on your life. Case in point: A good score (700 and up) will get you the best rates on things like home loans and insurance. But if you don’t regularly check your number, it’s a lot harder to catch—and correct—inaccuracies that could be bringing your score down.
You Should Establish Your Long-Term Savings Goals
You’ve always wanted to take a year off and travel the world. Or cover the cost of your daughter’s college tuition in full. (No small feat.) Whatever the goal, what’s most important is that you have one—and that you’re regularly auditing your budget and redistributing cash to make your savings dreams come true.
...And Renegotiate Any Short-Term Loans
Not just credit cards—if you’re still dealing with student loans, now’s the time to get on the phone to see if you can refinance your balance and lock down a lower interest rate. The odds of securing one are in your favor now that you’ve got years of regular payments, not to mention a solid credit score, under your belt.
You Should Have the “Money Talk” With Your Parents
It’s not easy, but knowing things like their savings status—and whether or not they have a living will—will help give you a better understanding of their future plans and the financial obligations they (and you) could have to bear down the road.
...And a General Sense of Your Retirement Goals
Dreaming of a life in Boca? Take a look at your current retirement savings and how far that gets you toward your dream. (So I could buy a two-bedroom condo but not a beachfront mansion…) Make adjustments to your 401(k) or IRA as needed, and keep your eye on the prize: Those 5 p.m. dinner buffets aren’t going to eat themselves.