Cost of Delay
Most people have long-term goals: starting a business, buying a home, sending the kids to college, enjoying a comfortable retirement. But too often they delay taking the steps necessary to turn their dreams into reality.
Unfortunately, by the time they realise the urgent need to save and invest money, it’s often too late to fully realise those goals. They offer many excuses for not setting financial goals, such as: “I don’t understand investing” or “I can’t afford to invest.”
The truth of the matter is, you can’t afford to delay.
Avoid the ‘cost of delay’
Early planning can help you maximise the power of time and reach your financial goals. It’s simple: The sooner you begin to save for your future financial needs, the more wealth you can accumulate.
Although the idea is straightforward and logical, most people fail to recognise the enormous increase in value that can result from beginning to save early. But if you wait, the amount of money you have in retirement may be drastically reduced.
Looking at the example below: a 30 year old starts regularly investing $1,000 a month, at a growth rate of 9%, By age 60, the investor will have $1,873,933.
If the investor delays:
- One year – the investor will only have $1,707,711 at age 60.
This means a one-year delay will be an opportunity cost of $166,222 in retirement.
- Ten years – the investor will only have $711,167 at age 60.
This means a ten-year delay will be an opportunity cost of $1,162,766 in retirement.
- Fifteen years – the investor will only have $413,479 at age 60.
This means a fifteen-year delay will be an opportunity cost of $1,460,454 in retirement.
- Twenty years – the investor will only have $220,002 at age 60.
This means a twenty-year delay will be an opportunity cost of $1,653,931 in retirement.
- Twenty five years – the investor will only have $94,225 at age 60.
This means a twenty five-year delay will be an opportunity cost of $1,779,678 in retirement.
The sooner you start saving, the better
The longer you delay before starting an investment plan, the more you will have to pay to build up a reasonable fund. This means that the longer you wait , the greater the contributions needed to reach your retirement goals due to the power of compound interest.
The charts demonstrate this point – the sooner you start saving, the better. Otherwise, you may be putting your children’s education, your business and your retirement at risk.
What shall I do?
Start now, no mater how small the amount you have. The longer your investment has to grow, the better the results. Even if you can’t afford to invest a large amount, you may be able to start a small but regular investing programme.
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