Despite how important it is to save and plan for retirement, the vast majority of people tend to put it on the back burner until later in life. Ironically, this is pretty much the biggest mistake that you can make when it comes to saving for your golden years. With more than 25 years of experience across a wide array of financial and investment fields, Chris Linkas is uniquely positioned to provide useful advice regarding this topic. The Bowdoin College grad urges people to get serious about retirement planning while they are still young. What is it about investing for retirement early that makes such a big difference? Read on to learn more.
It’s natural for young adults to not be too concerned about their eventual retirement. After all, they still face many decades of being in the workforce, so they often feel like time is on their side. However, some of the best aspects of growing investments–in particular, compound interest–only pay off when they can continue over very extended periods of time. Now that he has nearly three decades of experience as an investment entrepreneur, Chris Linkas has the clarity that younger people often lack regarding the subject. Although it’s not something that young adults like hearing, the key to not only setting up a comfortable retirement but also to establishing a lifetime of financial stability largely boils down to getting started as early as possible.
Many factors conspire to make young adults reluctant to set aside money for retirement investing. In particular, they tend to earn small paychecks, and parting with even a little of the money can be difficult. As evidenced by the life of someone like Chris Linkas, who went straight from college into a high-powered career in finance and investing, taking a proactive and measured approach to life early on opens up many exciting opportunities later. Impulsivity is a common trait among the young, but Linkas is convinced that becoming disciplined about retirement planning at an early age reduces the risk of making impulsive and potentially damaging decisions later.
Top Reasons to Start Investing for Retirement Early
Without further ado, here are five of the best reasons to start saving and investing for retirement now instead of later:
- Grow Your Nest Egg with Compound Interest – The power of compound interest cannot be stressed enough. One thing that people fail to realize it, however, is that it only really pays off when it is able to continue over extended periods of time. Someone who starts putting money into a 401(k) while in their 20s will end up with a much better return than someone who waits until they are in their 30s–and they won’t have to contribute for nearly as long. In interviews, Chris Linkas has stressed the importance of routinely assessing your investments and being objective about what you find. When you start investing as a young adult, you are far more likely to like what you see in your retirement coffers when the time comes.
- Enjoy a Better Quality of Life – Having the security of a strong investment portfolio at a young age typically means having a better quality of life throughout your entire life. That nest egg will keep growing, providing a cushion that will give you far more flexibility than many others your age. Someone like Chris Linkas, who has been in the industry for more than 25 years and who has held top positions for firms like RER Financial Group, LLC, and Goldman Sachs, can easily confirm that people who take retirement seriously while they are young tend to fare better in general.
- Have the Flexibility to Take Some Risks – People who wait until they are older to start investing for retirement know that they are down to the wire. They can’t afford to make risky investment decisions because if things don’t pan out, their entire retirement plan could fall apart. However, the best yields typically go along with more volatile situations. By starting young, you will have time to take some risks that are likely to pay off well for you. In his original role as head of commercial real estate for a UK-based firm, Chris Linkas sought opportunistic debt and equity real estate investments. These activities tend to offer high rewards for high risk, so he understands what is at stake (Medium).
- Cultivate Better Spending Habits at a Younger Age – Young adults often lack the maturity and patience that are needed to be careful about their spending, so they often end up in financial trouble. Those who are diligent and disciplined about investing for retirement at a young age, on the other hand, tend to be a lot more careful about impulse buys. When Chris Linkas earned his bachelor’s degree from Bowdoin College in 1991, he entered the workforce during the Savings and Loan scandal. Amid such financial tumult, he and others like him were forced to be extremely careful. Linkas can, therefore, attest to the importance of spending wisely as a young adult.
- Be a Step Ahead of Your Peers – Although your friends might scoff at you for opting out of, say, an exciting cruise because you need to make your usual contribution to your retirement investment account, they will envy you later. Being proactive about investing for retirement as a young person will put you in a better position for dealing with the inevitable financial hardships that will come later. In his current role as Managing Director and Head of European Credit for a UK-based investment group, Chris Linkas regularly sees first-hand what a profound difference early investing can make in a person’s life. Linkas regularly sits down for interviews where he imparts this exact advice for this precise reason.
When he was a young man, Linkas harbored the same doubts and anxieties as any other young person. In college, he earned a degree in philosophy but proceeded to jump into the world of finance and is now one of the best-known investment entrepreneurs out there. This all goes to show that while young people have time to discover themselves, they can benefit enormously from being disciplined about their finances–if nothing else (https://www.kirkland.com/sitecontent.cfm?contentID=226&itemid=11779).
If you are under the age of 30 and haven’t started investing for retirement, there’s no time like the present. It may feel like you have an eternity to plan for your golden years, but they will be here before you know it.