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Sticking to the basics can help you achieve your long-term financial goals.

Save Your Money First

In the ideal world, we tell our investors to have at least six months, and as much as two years, of living expenses set aside before they invest in the stock market. Although many Americans may not be there yet, it is a good goal. Having a sufficient emergency fund ― in good times and bad ― should provide flexibility and allow you to make rational, unforced financial decisions.

Borrow as Little as Possible

Virtually everyone has a loan with the largest typically being their mortgage. It’s wonderful to realize the American dream, but paying off your debts as soon as possible can help improve your financial footing.

Over the years, our investment research team has found that the companies that survive economic downturns are often the ones with little or no debt and plenty of cash. This holds true for individuals and their households as well.

Invest in Your Future

Invest your hard-earned money carefully, focusing on a long-term horizon. Choose investments that you understand and feel comfortable owning. You may want to read our short article, “4 Things To Consider Before You Invest.”

Stick to the Basics