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Your 20s is a time when you are shaping your career and growing your earnings and disposable income. 


This is the best time to start learning about finances: identifying those things that are worth spending your money on, and the opportunities you can realise through investing.


These decades are the best years to begin creating your own wealth and to succeed at this, you need to start planning your finances.

Start Multiplying Your Money


The popular saving strategy is to set aside at least 20% of your income for long-term savings. However, if you do start early, you can save as little as 5% and work your way up to 20% when you have more income to stash away.


The power of compound interest is that even small investments can really grow given enough time. Automate your monthly savings so that you don’t miss making regular deposits. 


What about your yearly bonuses? Set aside some for rainy days in a fixed deposit account or other low risk investments. The idea is not let your savings sit idle, but find ways to multiply your money through low-risk investment products.

Start a Budget 

Creating a budget is empowering as it drives home the importance of understanding where every ringgit goes.


To start, track your expenses as this helps you realise patterns in your spending habits. Once you have gotten some insights on where you spend the most, you can then find ways to cut/add/make changes to your monthly budget and make the most of your money. 


It sounds simple but as it is with exercising, it can be hard to consistently stick to a budget. Aim to manage your budget monthly and you will benefit from it tremendously no matter what your income is. 

Set Milestones 

Think ahead and set timelines for your personal goals. For example:


  • Open an investment account 
  • Set a 5 or 10-year net worth target (like RM100,000) 

Creating milestones provide a sense of purpose and motivation to reach your future financial goals.  

Increase Your Savings Rate


As you move into your 30s, you should ideally have gotten some debt out of the way (have paid of your car, for example) and will have more income to save. 


Think of savings as a percentage of income rather than an absolute amount. This ensures that your savings actually increase in proportion to your income.


While you increase the percentage of your income that goes into savings, you can also explore investing for higher returns, with added focus on retirement planning.  



As the old adage goes “sedikit-sedikit, lama-lama jadi bukit”, these simple steps will set you up for financial security in the years to come.


This article is brought to you by CIMB as part of our ongoing efforts to raise the level of financial literacy among Malaysians. Financial knowledge and understanding are key to making well-informed and meaningful financial decisions that will improve all our well-being. This, in turn, achieves CIMB’s purpose of advancing customers and society.