Financial independence starts with careful planning. If you want to be a millionaire in the future, you have to do the work today.

We’re excited to present the second installment of our Ask A Financial Advisor column. Financial experts from United Capital have once again taken questions from our community and answered with real advice. Volume 2 of Ask A Financial Advisor features advice on starting and maintaining a saving plan as well as saving for future goals.


How can I start the process of investing my money? Right now, I know nothing and would like to educate myself before doing anything. What are some trusted sources and beginner tips? – Naome Jeanty

It’s great that you want to educate yourself prior to getting on the investment ladder. There are loads of resources available to one on the internet, so please do as much research as you can. The best way to create a life that is not dependent on a paycheck is to start investing early in your life and these are our top three tips –

1) invest at least 20% of your savings on a consistent basis.

2) take calculated risks, especially when you are young

3) start investing for retirement as soon as you have a steady income from paid employment or an on-going business venture.

I earn N134,000 and I look forward to getting a landed property and also a car by this time next year. How can I save to meet up with this target? Thank you. – Toyin

As with starting any project, it’s important to define clear goals -which you’ve done already. You do however need to prioritize these goals such that you are able to differentiate between routine expenses, short term and long term savings goals.

Use the SLA Savings calculator and remember that an emergency fund is key. This is where it comes in handy to set up a Private Investment Trust. And when you do need to borrow, let it be for investment purposes i.e. purchase of land etc.

How do I start and MAINTAIN a savings plan. I currently live paycheck to paycheck when debts have been ignored. I want to put money aside, I’m currently paycheck to paycheck (bills paid, rent paid etc) but at the cost of ignoring some debts. (Owe family and friends money…I can’t afford to pay them back at the moment). – Gloria

Determination here is the key, both to getting out of debt and maintaining a consistent savings plan. The first step is to determine what you can actually save after taking out your routine expenses, i.e. food, transportation etc.

Then the next step is ensuring that you actually do save. A great way to going about this is to set up a direct debit order on your salary account or main business account which ensures that a designated sum is debited at regular intervals i.e. monthly, quarterly etc and moved into an investment vehicle such as a Private Investment Trust.

If you’d like to get your questions answered by a financial advisor from United Capital, submit your questions by clicking here

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