Advice for Graduates

Julia Carlson |

Graduation is an excellent time to get your financial life started on the right foot. I wanted to share some tips to do just this. Whether you are headed to college or starting a career in the real world, these solid strategies will serve you well.

First, pay yourself first. Save money from every paycheck, no matter how small of an amount it is. This will help you create a savings habit and puts you in control of your money. If you work somewhere that has a workplace retirement plan – sign up for it as this helps you automate this savings habit.

Next, live within your means and establish a budget no matter what your income. What this means is even if your parents (or student loans) are helping you with living costs at college, create a simple plan for how you are going to spend the money each month. If you don’t have a plan, you plan to fail.

And lastly, do everything you can to avoid debt! Sometimes, this isn’t possible while going to college but try to work part-time, start a small business, nanny for local families, there is always something you can do. Falling into the trap of debt in college, specially credit cards and auto loans makes it hard to get your financial life off to a good start.

Congrats and best of luck to you in the future!

Information in this material is for general information only and not intended as investment, tax or legal advice. Please consult the appropriate professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation prior to making any financial decision.
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