Short Term Financial Goals
You Can Use Today

If you have short term financial goals get ready to take your financial future seriously...

  • List your goals.
  • Prioritize each financial goal.
  • Determine your target date to reach each goal.
  • Give each goal an estimated cost.
  • Account for money already saved for each goal.
  • Plan how to achieve your goals.

For younger people, setting long term goals can be difficult, especially when they are distracted by their shorter term needs.

Financial planning is about prioritizing your needs and goals and then allocating available resources and cash flow towards meeting them.

Retirement is an essential goal for everyone, however, it may be too far out on the time horizon for some people who have their sights set on achieving shorter term goals.

In fact, important short term goals should take precedence over long term goals, especially when there is limited cash flow available.

Short term goals such as paying off debt and accumulating an emergency fund are important priorities.

If they are not achieved, could actually hurt your chances of achieving your long term goals.

In many cases it is possible to do both, but it does require a deliberate plan of action and a lot of discipline. 

3 Tips For Short Term Financial Goals

If you are serious about getting your finances on track, here are three tips for short term goals you can use today. 

1. Budget Seriously

Foremost, it requires that a serious budget be adhered to which probably means forgoing weekend getaways, dining out, and your daily cappuccino for a while.

But it will be worthwhile.

Achieving short term goals can be extremely gratifying because the benefits derived by meeting them are felt immediately.

After redlining non-essential expenses and scaling back on discretionary spending, you need to determine a specific dollar amount you can commit to your goals.

2. Clearly Define and Prioritize Your Short Term Financial Goals

It is especially important to be very clear in defining short term goals.

Having a precise amount or cost and a very specific target date are critical to be able to establish a strict spending budget.

If you have multiple goals, you may need to prioritize them.

Sometimes it’s important to try to achieve two goals simultaneously, such as paying off a high interest credit card and building an emergency fund.

You may need to allocate more cash flow to your top priority and/or you may need to allocate some more time for your lower priorities.

Once you determine the cost and time frame, commit a dollar amount towards each goal.

3. Set Short Term Benchmarks for Your Short Term Goals

Saving money for short term goals can be challenging. It requires discipline and that may require that you put some pressure on yourself to stay on track.

Rather than set a two-year time-line for a goal such as accumulating an emergency fund of $12,000 (emergency funds should amount to 4 to 6 months of expenses), set shorter term benchmarks that are easily attainable.

For instance, a monthly benchmark of $500 to add to your emergency fund is highly attainable and you will realize more immediate, tangible benefits.

The same approach can be used for paying down a credit card, or saving for a major purchase such as a car.

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