Why aren't you investing?! Anyone can do it!

Do you feel like you are struggling to get ahead of your finances? A new survey by Harris Poll, revealed that nearly 4 out of 5 millennials (79 percent) are not currently investing in the stock market. So why is this?

While working with numerous people on their finances over the years I have discovered some pitfalls that make it difficult for people to get ahead. Here are a few I have found and ways to help.

Not Budgeting:

Budgeting is the most important item to start your financial planning as it allows you a visual of the flow of your income. Monitoring your income and expenses can help you stay on track and increase your net worth.

Begin with creating a realistic savings goal for each month. Ensure that this strategy will work for you.

2. With help from a financial planner, determine how much you will be expected to save in order to meet those goals (Retirement, House down payment, College Education, etc.).

I encourage putting away a minimum of 10% of your gross pay into your investment accounts (including retirement & medium-term accounts.) Ideally, being able to save 20%-30% of your gross pay is an excellent goal to have.

Money in the Bank:

Depending on your profession, you should have anywhere between 3 to 6 months of emergency expenses in your bank account at all times. This allows access to cash immediately in case an unforeseen event occurs, and you will not have to tap into your investments. Once you have enough saved, it is important to get that excess money to work hard for you. You work hard for your money, it’s time it reciprocates! Don't leave it earning pennies in the bank. If you were to leave your excess money in the bank, you will be actually losing out to inflation over time.

Holding A Credit Card Balance:

While we all love to get our travel points, leaving a remaining balance that's getting dinged by outrageous interest rates these days (10-25%) is not a smart move. This will hinder you from saving and investing your money over time. If you find yourself over spending each month, go back to your budget and see what you can cut back on. By letting your balance accrue interest you are hurting your chances of building your emergency fund and the ability to start to save for your financial goals.

Waiting to make more money to save:

Sometimes it’s great to be optimistic about your career and the path you see yourself on but that shouldn’t deter you from savings now. Every year you do not save is a huge loss to you in the long run due to the power of compounding interest. Even if you are putting away a few hundred dollars a month, in the end it will pay off significantly. The younger you are the more time is your friend.

Not working with a Financial advisor:

I find many times that people think they do not have enough money to start working with an advisor. Gerber Kawasaki prides itself on being able to help anyone who wants to get ahead in life. We have designed our Wealth Building program for individuals and families that want to get started investing and teach them ways to manage their assets while pursuing their life and financial goals. Being on top of your finances will allow you to have peace of mind that you’re on the right track to pursue your financial goals and financial freedom. It starts with a simple budget and holding yourself accountable. This is why it’s so important to have a financial planner on your team to be there every step of the way through your life.

By Nick Licouris
Investment Advisor Representative

Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC.

Investment advice offered through Gerber Kawasaki Inc, a registered investment advisor.

The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. To determine which course of action may be appropriate for you, consult your financial advisor. No strategy assures success or protects against loss.

Gerber Kawasaki, 2716 Ocean Park Blvd. #2022 Santa Monica, CA 90405. Contact us at (310) 441-9393.