If you're reading this - congratulations! You made it to your adult life chapter. You may have accepted your very first full-time job and you're thinking 'wow, I have SO much money now'. Although it may be true that you are making more than you ever have before, it's important to be responsible with your newfound paycheck in order to set yourself up for a life of financial stability and ultimately financial freedom.
Here's what to do to get yourself started off on the right foot:
1. Pay Down Your Debt
More than half of American students1 now need to borrow to pay their way through college. If you're one of those students, you probably are graduating sitting on a pile of debt - don't worry, you can pay this down quickly if you make it a priority. A good approachis to try to go well beyond the minimum payment (if you can) in order to pay your debt down fast.
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2. Automate Your Savings
Set up your checking and savings account to automatically draft money from your checking to your savings every month so you don't even have to think about it. You should aim to save at least 20% of your monthly income.2
3. Pay Your Bills On Time
If you get in the habit of paying your bills late you can get yourself into a lot of financial trouble and your credit score can take a major hit - and fast. To avoid this, make sure to pay down your balances as fast as possible.
4. Contribute To Your Retirement Savings Plan
Start saving for retirement sooner rather than later. Think of it this way: if you start saving earlier, you will only have to save smaller amounts at a time versus large chunks at a time later on. Trust us, you'll be avoiding stress down the road if you start saving for your retirement now.
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