The National Endowment for Financial Education conducts an annual survey of CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals asking for their top financial recommendations. The top recommendation is to “live within your means.”
Many people believe that the only way they will find financial independence is to strike it big on the next Apple or Facebook or, better yet, by winning the Powerball! Yet, research shows this is not how people achieve financial independence. The reality of life points us in another direction.
Based on the responses from CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals, the top four recommendations are:
- Live within your means.
- Pay yourself first.
- Rein in your debt.
- Maintain adequate insurance.
Boy, does this sound boring! But it works. Having worked with individuals and couples for more than 30 years, I observe that these four recommendations provide a firm foundation for financial independence. In fact, people who strike it big with a great investment, a large inheritance, or with a significant lottery win and then violate these four recommendations often do not maintain their financial independence.
Consider visiting the smartaboutmoney.org website to learn more about these foundational principles. Learning how to handle money wisely is far more important than trying to strike it rich. Many people spend their whole lives looking in vain for that secret pot of gold at the base of the rainbow.
For more insight, listen to Jentner Wealth Management’s weekly podcast by clicking here. Or download Jentner’s white papers on The Four Cornerstones of Prudent Investing and The Active Versus Passive Investing Debate.