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Setting Goals

As you embark on the task of getting your personal finances in order, it’s helpful to have some goals. Of course, if you do not yet know what’s wrong with your finances, it might not be easy to set these goals—not yet, anyway. But the fact that you are reading this suggests you think something is not as it should be. As you work through the chapters in this book, keep the thought of goals in mind and formulate them as you go along.

For many people, financial goals are centered on saving money. America has one of the lowest saving rates of any developed country, so a lot of people are in this boat. You might want to save for something major, the most common things being to buy a house, to pay for your children’s college, and to fund your retirement. Perhaps you just want to build up a reserve against emergencies. Many financial planners recommend you have enough savings to live off of for six months in the event of a job loss. Very few people have this cushion.


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