#Adulting on a budget

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – This week, 8News reporter Roxie Bustamante is taking on the challenges of #Adulting. Today, we discuss the struggles of budgeting and how people can work to keep more green than red in their bank account.

Matthew McKay, managing member and CCO of McKay Wealth Management Group in Richmond, said he noticed many people in their 20s and 30s faced similar challenges when trying to budget as young professionals.

“They’re my peers,” McKay said. “Working with people that are within the ages of 25 and 45 is right around my age. The reason why I like working with these people is because they are going through the same problems and the same financial issues and obstacles that I went through as I became an adult.”

He created an #Adulting guide to help those trying to budget for today, while building a solid foundation for a financially successful future.

“Buying a home, having children, getting married, all of those additional goals that people have,” McKay said, “and being able to take their income that they’re now generating, which they think is a lot but then when you look at taxes and social security, retirement and all these things that come out of it, you end up with a lot less than you originally thought, and then you have all these different responsibilities that you really have to find out how to prioritize responsibly.”

McKay said budgeting doesn’t have to take a toll on your lifestyle. Starting out with a plan, setting financial goals and setting up automatic payments for monthly bills will help people find a way to balance their budget.

“You really have to take a hard look and see if you’re spending more than you are bringing in the door. I’m saying the money after you take out the taxes and all that stuff that comes out that you have to take care of,” McKay said. “Your net pay that comes into the door. If you’re spending more than that then you really have to go back and look at what you’re spending your money on and start cutting out. But, once you’ve done that, if you [are] able to right size how much you’re bringing in versus how much you’re spending then we’re big advocates for automating.”

He said more college students are graduating with student loan debt that will take years, in some cases even a decade, to pay off. That’s why budgeting now and making small adjustments will help tremendously in the long run.

“Finding a way to pay that back, while at the same time looking at pay[ing] for the rent and utilities and still living their lives in a way that’s not miserable working 60 hours a week,” McKay said, “while taking care of these financial responsibilities that they never had to take care of before, so prioritizing where their money goes in a way that makes sense.”

McKay said the age group that is going through Adulting is often the one in most need of financial guidance, and it’s never too early to consult with an adviser to help start the process of planning for the future while living for today.

“Small differences now make a big difference long-term,” McKay said. “It’s very rewarding to us to serve that market because they are underserved. They don’t get served by the larger firms that are out there, the more traditional firms because they have account size limits.”

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