A pilot's first solo flight is a big moment in his life. Your financial solo is a great moment in yours.
Some Tips for the Journey
1. You can be single without being solitary. Family, friends, co-workers and church can help you stay balanced spiritually, socially and financially.
2. Don't despise small beginnings. Most good jobs require a period of underpaid hard work as the price for entry.
3. Even if you're hoping to find that special someone, get your financial act together. About the time you can enjoy living on your own your dreamboat will probably arrive.
4. Learn to live beneath your means. You're the only retirement plan you've got.
5. Save twice as much, say 20 percent, of your income, if you're expecting to find a spouse. You'll need it.
6. Don't wait to buy a home and take advantage of the current once-in-a generation low interest rate opportunity. Just get a little extra space to accommodate for a future family.
7. Being responsible only for yourself means that you can move anywhere and do anything to take advantage of opportunities. The world is your oyster.
8. Don't be too proud to let your family help you. You can save a lot of money by staying at Mom's motel a while longer.
9. Credit card companies love to entice singles because they usually have more free cash flow. Don't let yourself be enslaved by debt.
10. Don't let universities sucker you into borrowing for an expensive four-year education. Work and save, go to community college and finish out your degree in a major that will make you money.
11. Student debt is dangerous because, if you make a mistake, the debt can't be forgiven as other debts can. Don't borrow unless there is a good job awaiting you in your chosen field.
12. Minimize your cash expenses by sharing accommodations with like-minded people and trading out your skills for service you need. You may never need to pay for a haircut again.
13. Become financially literate by learning about investments and taxes. And don't be afraid to lose a little money, because the experience could save you thousands later.
14. You can recover from a financial setback. Our role model, Abraham Lincoln, lost a lot of money in failed business but managed to build his life and reach his destiny anyway, and so can you.
15. Remember Paul's admonition to Timothy:
"Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, and in purity" (1 Tim. 4:12).
Ron Allen is a Christian businessman, CPA and author who serves in local, national and international ministries, spreading a message of reconciliation to God, to men and between believers. He is founder of the International Star Bible Society, telling how the heavens declare the glory of God; the Emancipation Network, which helps people escape from financial bondage; and co-founder with his wife, Pat, of Corporate Prayer Resources, dedicated to helping intercessors.
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