experience-life

Do it while you’re young!

Before I begin this post I should really tell you a little bit about myself. My name is Adam, I’m 29 years old, I have 2 kids, I pay for a house, I pay bills, I run a car, I financially plan for the future and like most other people my age I have a whole host of other living expenses to account for. When all is said and done, life is pretty expensive.

I do however remember a time when life wasn’t so expensive, when I had plenty of spare money at the end of the month to spend on whatever I liked. I didn’t really think about how best to spend my money back then, let alone if I should be saving it. Looking back now though it’s clear to see that when it came to money life was just so easy. Perhaps it was too easy and I expected it to always be that way but one thing is for sure, I certainly didn’t appreciate it as much as I should have. If I’d have known then what I know now –you know you’re getting old when you start saying stuff like that – I’d have used my time and money a lot differently, a lot more wisely, here’s what I’d have done.

Travel More

The main thing I wish I’d have done more of when I was younger is travelling and I don’t just mean heading off to sun bathed all-inclusive resorts, I mean proper travelling. One place I’ve always wanted to visit is the Inca Trail in Peru and I’d also have loved to have taken some time out to back pack through Australia. Yes, the opportunity to visit these places may come around again one day but now that I’m a family man with bills to pay and a family to support, never again will I have the same physical and financial freedom to head off on my dream holiday without a care in the world. What would your dream holiday be?

Save More

One of the biggest financial ironies in life is that when we’re young and we get our first job, for most of us the last thing on our mind is saving. Actually though, the amount of spare cash that you have when you’re young makes this one of the best opportunities you’ll ever have in your life to save a lot of money!

Instead we just want to get out there and buy up all the things we’ve ever laid our eyes on but could never afford. While this is all part of the fun of growing up, be careful not to underestimate the unique position you’re in to be able to save some money and put yourself on a good financial footing for years to come, the years when you’ll need to take on bigger financial commitments. Instead of running out and buying the most expensive car you can afford on finance, why not consider saving some money to buy a car outright? Instead of using the extra cash you’re earning to fund the rent on your own place to live, why not stay at home for as long as you can and save your money towards a deposit to buy a house instead?

Experience More

Although I’m encouraging you to save as much as you can I’m certainly no kill joy. The financial freedom of youth provides you with a unique opportunity to experience a variety of different things, things that there might never be a good time to spend on when you have a family to provide for.

Whether you use the financial freedom of youth to travel more, save more or experience more is up to you but whatever you do, don’t waste it. Real life will creep up on you before you know it and as much as ‘real life’ brings its own blessings, for most of us the freedom to do anything you want with your money is not one of them. That blessing is reserved for the young so make the most of it.

Are there things you wish you’d have done with the financial freedom of your youth?

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26 Responses to Do it while you’re young!

  1. Michelle says:

    Love this post. I really want to start traveling more and start doing some long-term travel.

  2. Wonderful post and thanks for the reminder. Am at that point where I can really travel more, save more and experience even more and honestly, I wouldn’t want to look back on this period in my life and wish I could have done more.
    For one, I should really focus on savings and shoring up my emergency fund!

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      Life has a funny way of creeping up on you Simon so make sure you do it while you can, you don’t want to be moaning about it in a blog post when you hit 29 :-)

  3. I’m glad I did most of the travelling I wanted to do while I was young because the prices these days have skyrocketed. Now that I’m not living in the UK and am in Canada there’s no way I’ll be able to travel as cheap as I used to back then. I’ve travelled to many many places around the world and if you can do it while you are young and have less responsibility, go for it!

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      Glad you were able to experience lots of different places Mr CBB and now you can keep building that retirement fund.

  4. Mark Ross says:

    I really like the idea of traveling more and saving more. I’m lucky that I’m still young, hopefully, I can do those in the near future.

  5. I love to travel, but right now, the money just isn’t there for traveling for me. I am saving more than I ever have and, maybe that will lead to open funds for travelling one day, we’ll see! Thanks for the great post!

  6. Good words of wisdom here. The key is to build a solid fiscal foundation early so you can achieve financial freedom, and enjoy the many great experiences life has to offer into the 30s, 40s, 50s, and beyond. As I often tell people, having money isn’t about hoarding it or being a miser, it is about putting yourself in a position to have choices. More money, more choices…and vice versa.

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      Great advice James and I agree, money is there to be enjoyed but you have an opportunity in youth to also set yourself up nicely for the future.

  7. Sam Gill says:

    I have been traveling a lot and I just love it. Yes it is also true that you need to save for yourself when you start with your first job for your future and spend it more sensibly. It is always good if you start saving in your early years so that you can build wealth for your future days

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      It’s about striking the balance between sense and fun I suppose Sam, enjoying your freedom whilst recognising the opportunity you have to set yourself up for the future!

  8. How I wish, wish, wish we would have saved more/spent less on stupid things like going out to eat and whatever fun stuff we found on sale at Target. I didn’t do any international traveling, but I did do a fair amount of traveling within the States, and that is one expenditure I don’t regret. Fun times!

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      You’ve hit the nail on the head Laurie, if you’re young it’s important to ask yourself ‘What will I regret and what won’t I regret when I look back in years to come?’

  9. I agree with all the advice, when I was 20 I went to Mexico, and then when I was 21 I bought my first brand new car. I saved up for the travel and paid cash, but the car was way beyond my means. I saved up 5 grand for a 20 grand car purchase. It was silly back then, but I really wanted a new ride. I could have been richer today if I just got a 5 grand used car for all cash. Young people need a mentor to help them navigate life early on.

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      That’s exactly it EL, I’m guessing you paid quite a bit of interest as well? Imagine being 20 grand richer now! I hope all these great comments strike a chord with a few young people.

  10. Wonderful post!

    I wish I could travel more. My wife and I have been lucky though, in the past 10 years, we’ve been to Europe a few times, the Caribbean a few times and South America.

    We want a balanced life because you can never take it with you ;)

    Saving for the future is great but you gotta live.
    Mark

  11. Rick says:

    33 1 girl and one in the oven. Could not of but it any better.

  12. robert says:

    Great post Adam.You know, the only problem with enjoying freedom and travellling a lot while you can is that you really miss it later on, when you can no longer do it. I sometimes wonder if it is best to do these things and then lose the freedom or to never know what it is like in the first place. I guess it depends upon the individual person concerned.

    • Adam | Money Rebound says:

      That’s a good point Robert, I’m not the most settled person as it is and I do wonder if I’d be even worse had I trotted around the globe a bit more, but then it might have worked the other way by getting it out of my system. Suppose I’ll never know, I wouldn’t change my life now for the world though. Love my wife and love my kids, so it’s all good.

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