By Audrey Washington - CEO Fiercely Financial Coaching and presenter for Financial Fitness workshop (RSVP here)
Nonprofit professionals are on the ground doing the work that serves the neediest and most vulnerable in our communities. They are advocating for those who face the challenge of homelessness, substance abuse, domestic violence and more. Nonprofit professionals have a heart of service but they often find themselves working for lower salaries and without consistent raises. While nonprofit professionals are working hard for others, they may often find themselves struggling financially. This is especially so for the young professionals who are now faced with paying off student loans and are living in high-cost areas like New York City.
These “5 Financial Tips for Nonprofit Professionals” can help you create a solid financial foundation and maintain your financial fitness.
Tip #1 Financial Goals
Setting financial goals is important when there is something that you want to do or buy and you don’t have the money for it. By setting financial goals you can plan for purchases and activities in a way that helps you to minimize your debt.
Tip #2 – Spending Plan
Your Spending Plan is your “Financial GPS”. It is the foundation for your finances and guides your spending. Create a realistic Spending Plan for yourself and review it monthly.
Tip #3 – Emergency Savings
This is especially important for nonprofit professionals because often positions and salaries are tied to funding. Saving 6 months of expenses is often difficult when you are trying to pay your monthly expenses. With this in mind, set a goal to save one month’s rent or a mortgage payment, which is your biggest expense. Once you save that, save a 2nd month and build from there.
Tip #4 – Debt Management
Student loans are an investment but you want to minimize any other debt. With credit cards, you only want to charge what you can pay in full each month. If you decide to purchase a car, consider a pre-owned car. Also, try to put down more of a downpayment and keep your loan term around 3 years.
Tip #5 – Retirement Savings
Be sure to enroll in your company’s retirement plan as soon as you are eligible and try to put in the maximum amount you are able to. Additionally, work with a reputable financial advisor to discuss additional retirement options such as an IRA.
Audrey Washington is the CEO of Fiercely Financial Coaching, she will be presenting for one of our upcoming workshops focused on financial fitness. You can find out more about the event and RSVP here.