Achieving financial security is an aim that most people aspire to. Worrying about money causes stress, loss of enjoyment of life, and is often linked to relationship problems. It goes without saying then, that being financially secure can make you happier. The definition of financial security is a very personal thing and depends to some degree on what you consider to be a minimum standard of living. At the very least, everyone needs a place to live, the basic necessities of life such as food, clothing and heating, and sufficient resources to be able to enjoy life. The basic elements of financial security are:
- Being debt free. This includes owning a home without debt as well as having no credit card or store card debt.
- Having enough money in reserve to cover unexpected expenses or unexpected loss of income. A basic rule of thumb is to have the equivalent of at least three months living expenses in reserve
- Having a secure income that is sufficient to maintain your desired standard of living. Securing your income requires keeping your skills up to date, maintaining good health and a good relationship with your partner or finding ways to generate passive income
- Having sufficient assets and investments to provide for your future needs. This includes your long term goals as well as your retirement needs.
- Being protected from financial risk through having adequate insurance cover, a diversified investment portfolio, and a means of protecting your assets in the event of business or relationship failure
Achieving financial security is difficult for those on low incomes. However, there are many instances where those on good incomes fail to put in place the basic elements of financial security and suffer badly when they have a sudden in change in their circumstances.