You want to make the most of your money. As a financially savvy person, you have several long-term financial goals, but you also want to focus on short-term goals that can be achieved in the not too distant future.
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This is important because you want to ensure that the steps you take now will support healthy finances later. Of course, knowing exactly what that means is easier said than done. Read on to learn more about short-term financial goals and how to create them so that you are successful.
What are short-term financial goals?
A short-term goal is a goal that can be achieved in the near future. Although there is no set timeline for these types of goals, they are generally completed in a period ranging from a week to a few years.
What are financial goals – short and long term? In general, an example of a short-term financial goal might be to save $50 by the end of the month, while a long-term financial goal might be to have $100,000 in a retirement account by the time you turn 40.
What should your short-term financial goals be? While you can draw inspiration from others for money-related short-term goals, you must come up with your own goals that fit your life and serve you personally. The answer to this question is different for everyone.
28 Short-Term Financial Goals
What are examples of short-term financial goals? As mentioned earlier, short-term financial goals are a very personal thing.
There is no right or wrong goal as long as it serves you personally and aims to improve your financial situation. Here’s a look at 28 short-term goal examples to get you started.
Personal and short-term financial goals of couples
1. Donate $20 to charity every month for one year.
2. Limit coffee sales to one day a week for six months.
3. Reduce discretionary spending by $100 per month.
4. Wait at least 24 hours before buying anything other than essentials for a month.
5. Set up an emergency fund and deposit $200 a month until you’ve saved three to six months of living expenses.
6. Create a budget that can save you $100 more per month.
7. Track your monthly expenses and use your results to create a plan to spend 10% less.
8. Compare car insurance prices by the end of the month to see if you can save money with comparable coverage from another company.
9. Consolidate credit card debt and eliminate it completely in three years.
10. Take public transit instead of a car service once a week for the next six months.
Short term financial career goals
11. Find a new job that offers a 10% raise by the end of the year.
12. Start a side hustle that can earn you at least $100 a week.
13. At your next performance review, negotiate a 6% raise at your current job.
14. Enroll in an online course in the next two months to make yourself more marketable.
Short-term family financial goals
15. Save $50 a month for each child’s college education.
16. Limit takeout for family meals to once a week.
17. Save $200 a month for a family vacation.
18. Put $100 a month into a savings account for winter holiday gifts.
19. Cut expenses by splitting chores — like house cleaning, car maintenance, or lawn care — among family members instead of hiring a professional.
20. Reduce your water bill by limiting showers to five minutes for each family member.
21. Save $15 per dinner — for a family of four — by ordering water instead of soda, tea, juice and coffee.
22. Set aside $200 from every paycheck for six months to prepare for upcoming unpaid maternity or paternity leave.
Short-term goals to prepare for the future
23. By July, meet the maximum employer contribution under 401(k) – or equivalent – contributions offered at your company.
24. Make an extra mortgage payment by the end of the year.
25. Open an investment account and deposit $50 per paycheck until you reach $1,000.
26. Assuming your car is paid off, put the amount of your car payment into a savings account each month to build up a sizable down payment for your next car.
27. Automatically put 10% of your monthly income into a savings account for the next two years to set aside money for a down payment on a house.
28. Pay off debt by putting an extra $50 a month on your loan or top-rate credit card.
How to achieve short-term goals
The first step to achieving your short-term financial goals is to set the right goals. This requires careful thought and consideration.
Making your goals SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time bound – is the best way to cross the finish line. This is important because vague goals are made to be broken. For example, it’s difficult to pursue an ambiguous short-term goal of saving more money. However, it’s much easier to pursue a goal of saving $100 over the next four weeks.
SMART goals leave no room for maneuver and essentially provide you with a roadmap to success right from the start.
Achieve your goals
However, the hardest part is blaming yourself for achieving them. There are a variety of ways to encourage yourself to stick to your goals, including:
Ask a friend to hold you accountable—or set goals together and keep each other on track. Use a goal tracking app that sends you reminders. If you’re saving for a specific purchase, keep a picture of it where you keep your credit cards so you can see it before you spend any money. How to pursue short-term goals
Setting short-term goals is a great way to improve your current and future financial health. It’s important to monitor your progress because seeing how far you’ve come will either motivate you to keep up the good work or encourage you to step it up when you’ve been slacking off.
When you make your goals SMART, tracking your progress is actually built into the goal. Since the M in SMART stands for measurable and the T for time-bound, it’s easy to see where you stand.
Ways to track your progress
Even with a SMART goal, it’s important to schedule regular times to evaluate your progress. If you are unsure if you are motivated enough to accomplish this on your own, find an accountability partner who will get in touch with you and give you extra encouragement to achieve this goal.
Here are a few other ways to track your progress:
Put a chart on your fridge or desk and fill it in as you progress for a visual reminder. Enter your progress into an app or spreadsheet at a specific time each day, e.g. B. right before lunch or between dinner and washing dishes. Keep a journal to regularly draw, write, or record your progress. Final recording
In essence, short-term goals are key to your financial health. The money movements you make today have a huge impact on your tomorrow, so choose goals that matter to you – and make them SMART.
Amber Barkley contributed coverage for this article.