What To Do With Your Money

Spend it! Yay!

No, no no! Too much spending now and you won't have any money left when you need it later.

personal finance


The first step is to budget: work out what you need to spend money on (food, rent, travel, etc.) and set aside money for each of those.

Note: our examples may not match your life ... so please use your own costs as we go along.

Example: start with $600 for a week

  • $100 for food
  • $110 for rent
  • $45 for train fares

That comes to $255 and you are left with $345

Then put some money aside for things you will need to pay for soon:

  • $30 towards the next electricity bill
  • $10 towards your phone bill
  • $15 into your clothes budget
  • $25 towards your insurance

That comes to $80 and you are left with $265

Then put some money aside for fun things:

  • $25 for one restaurant meal
  • $20 for snacks during the week
  • $20 for a movie night

That comes to $65 and you are left with $200

Tip: get the money as cash and put it into marked envelopes so you aren't tempted to use it for other things:

budget envelopes: phone, movies, clothes

Emergency Money

There are times you need extra money. Something needs fixing. Or you suddenly have to travel somewhere far. Having some emergency money gives you a good feeling of confidence.

  • $20 for the emergency fund

You are left with $180

Pay Off Debt

Debt (particularly Credit Card debt) has high interest charges. Your best "investment" is to pay off that debt

You have a credit card debt of $600? Put your $180 straight into that.

It will save you a lot of interest later on. In a few weeks you will have no debt and can think of doing other things with your money.

Employer Matched Retirement Savings

Some companies will match your investment in retirement savings (up to a certain amount). This is like free money!

You put $50 into retirement savings, and your employer also puts in $50. That is $100 in your name!

This is one of the best investments if it is available.

Future Fund

There are things you want to do in the future. Study at University. Go on a vacation. Buy a house.

Set up investments for those!

No debt to pay off? Put your $180 into savings.

You could put the money in:

Learn about investing.


You may want to retire one day. It takes a LOT of money to do that. Better start saving now.