Whether you are just starting out in your career or have successfully moved up the career ladder, many of us tend to focus on the here and now while ignoring the future when it comes to finances. While there are a lot of financial mistakes we can make, here are 5 that are the most common and avoidable:

1. Not Planning for Retirement

Retirement may seem like a lifetime away, but the only way to make sure that you have what you need to retire is to start planning early. If you start saving for retirement when you get your first job, even if it’s a very small amount, you will establish the habit as well as start to build savings.

Short-term goals, like a new car, can overshadow what seems like the very long-term goal of retirement. However, it’s wise to get your priorities straight early on so you’ll reap huge benefits.

2. Having No Emergency Fund

For the same reasons we tend to skip proper retirement planning, we also skip saving for emergency situations. An emergency fund should cover your expenses for at least three months, keeping $1,000 available for unexpected financial emergencies and 3-6 months of income in savings in case of a job loss or medical illness. 

3. Buying an Expensive New Car

While it may make financial sense to buy a new car it is important to not buy more car than you need. That shiny and expensive car may look tempting but keeping your long-term financial goals in mind and choosing a car that serves your current needs instead of draining your bank account should be a priority. Also consider as a rule of thumb: the more expensive the car, the more expensive the repairs.

4. Overusing Credit

It is very easy to fall into the debt trap with credit cards. While you may start carrying a small balance on your credit cards, it can quickly build up and with interest! You can avoid this situation by using credit sparingly and only for planned purchases and implement a plan to save for major purchases and pay for most in cash or pay the card off immediately.

 5. Not Utilizing a Budget

A budget can help you at any level of income and can even give you financial freedom because you can see where you are spending and they’re less trouble than you think. It can be as simple as tracking money in and money out. As you make more money and your expenses get more complex, you can customize your budget from there.

As your locally owned community bank of choice, the success of your financial future is top of mind. We offer Personal Checking Accounts, Money Market, Personal Savings Accounts, CDs, IRAs and more! To learn more about First National Community Bank’s financial solutions, visit:  fncbank.com