Making little changes to the way you spend and save your money now can mean the difference between retiring and …retiring…

Here’s what you need to do.

Pay Your (Future) Self

Put 5% of each paycheck into a Thrift Savings Plan to gather interest until you cash it out when you leave the military. If you’re single, you get three meals a day and a roof over your head, so don’t waste money on food or living off base. Put a little money away each month and save it for emergency expenses

Think about retirement now. No, seriously

It comes faster than you think, so build the future you want now. Open a retirement savings account, like a Roth IRA, and start adding to it each month. Get a life insurance plan from Navy Mutual that covers gaps in your SGLI and can build cash value as you age

Good things come to those with high credit scores

Pay your credit card off every month to avoid fees, and keep your credit usage low. Sign up for a credit monitoring service and check your credit score every month. Put your bills on autopay and never get a late fee.

This article is sponsored by Navy Mutual.