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The days of groveling for internships and decoding the dating scene are over. Thank goodness!
Now that you’re 30-something, life is normalizing. And it’s time to enjoy a career you’ve worked hard for and a family you adore. But it’s also time to step it up financially.
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Here are 30 common expenses to plan for in your 30s.
- Debt Repayment—Don’t let debt follow you into your 40s. Get rid of it now.
- Mortgage—Before buying a house, get out of debt and save up a decent down payment (we recommend at least 10%, but preferably 20%). Oh, and beef up that emergency fund or else Murphy will move in!
- Property Taxes—Now that you’re a homeowner, you get to pay for a little piece of the earth. Fun.
- Children—If you’re having babies in your 30s, you’ll be shelling out for car seats, diapers, onesies and doctor visits. Get tips for financially preparing for a baby.
- Medical Insurance—Adding to your household translates into higher insurance premiums. Don’t let this one slide. Keep your family covered at all times.
- Term Life Insurance—Now that you have a family to support, you need term life insurance. End of story.
- Gym Memberships—Your body isn’t what it once was. Unless you plan on pounding the pavement, budget for a health club.
- Retirement Savings—Capitalize on compound interest! Invest now so you won’t be living off Social Insecurity later.
- College Funds—Save for your little ones’ college educations after you’re out of debt and dropping 15% of your household income into a retirement fund.
Related: Retirement or College Funding: Which Comes First?
- Glasses/Contacts—It’ll be nice to read a book again without squinting.
- Furniture—Good-bye mismatched hand-me-downs. Hello classy bedroom suite.
- Car Replacement—Your college car running on fumes? Make sure your new-to-you replacement is well within your means.
- Moving Expenses—If you relocate for a job, buy that first house, or move to be near family, expect to part with a nice chunk of change.
Related: Save Your Sanity With These Moving Day Tips
- More Food—You’ve got more mouths to feed. Budget more money to feed them.
- Kids’ Commissions—As your kids start doing chores for money, remember: That money comes from you. Learn how to get kids to experience the value of hard work.
- Better Clothes—Ready to get rid of those cheap, fall-apart pieces? Prepare yourself. Nicer clothes cost more cash.
- Family Portraits—Kodak moments may be free, but professional photo sessions are not.
- Side Business—Always wanted to turn your hobby into a business? Save up and start small. Never go into debt for a startup.
- Kids’ Extracurriculars—Ballet. Soccer. Music lessons. All that talent costs money. And time.
- Annual Vacations—From additional plane tickets to extra hotel rooms, a week at Disney ain’t cheap.
Related: 5 Steps to Planning a Memorable Vacation
- Lawn Care/Housekeeper—You can finally afford to pay someone else to do some of those dreaded household tasks. Yippee!
- Professional Organizations—Pay your dues. That’s all.
- Date Nights—While delivery pizza will always have a place in your heart, your palette’s probably a little more adventurous by now. Budget accordingly.
- Babysitters—Don’t forget the hidden cost of date night: paying someone to watch your little ones sleep. Ah, the price of freedom.
- Continuing Education—If you’re ready to advance or change your career, college may be calling. Cash-flow it or don’t go. Ask yourself these six questions before going back to college.
- Electronics Upgrades—New computers, tablets, TVs and cell phones are probably in your future.
- Celebrations—As your friends and family members expand their broods, you can count on a lot more wedding showers, baby showers and birthday parties. Gifts are appreciated.
- Pet Care—Save for routine pet care and surgeries as your pup ages. Get our ideas for practical ways to save on pet care.
- Memberships—Don’t forget about your annual memberships to Costco, Sam’s Club or AAA.
- Extra Giving—If you have some extra cash to give away, think about donating to foreign missionaries or to a local outreach (along with your regular tithe).