Just graduated college, but feeling confused about how to manage your money in the real world?
You’re not alone. As much as a college education was stressed to Gen Y as critical and essential, no one put the same emphasis on financial education.
The result is many of us feel unprepared and lacking money management skills we need to get ahead as adults who are now paying our own way.
But there are some wonderful resources out there to help you get your finances figured out — and one of them is the newest collection of information and advice from Inceptia.
A Financial Guide for Gen Y Grads
This PDF is full of advice from financial professionals and personal finance bloggers who have been through it all themselves.
Some of my favorite advice in the guide?
- Ask for help when you need it. Reach out to parents (who have had to do all this money stuff before), financially-savvy friends, and those who help others with professional financial advice.
- Manage your student loans and plan ahead by saving for tomorrow — both for emergencies and retirement.
- Understand compound interest.
- Avoid lifestyle inflation.
- Track spending, set a reasonable budget, and establish financial goals.
- Understand your wants vs. your needs.
- Make room for what you value — like traveling and experiencing the world!
The best part is that Inceptia’s guide offers you suggestions and actionable tips on how to put those ideas into practice.
What to Do and Not to Do with Your Student Loans
The guide also provides plenty of insight from past students and those who work with college grads struggling with student loans and debt.
I loved Stephanie Halligan’s piece on how she paid off over $30,000 in student loans in under four years! She provides a checklist of the actions that guided her so that others can take the same sort of steps to become debt-free, too. Check out her website: The Empowered Dollar, for more great tips on paying off your college loans.
Her story is inspirational and shows that with lots of work, dedication, and motivation, you can manage and eliminate your debt.
Just as helpful is understanding what not to do regarding your loans. You can learn a lot from reading about some common issues many student borrowers have after graduation — and how avoid their problems.
6 Tips to Boost Your Financial Well-Being
I was really thrilled to be able to contribute and provide advice for Gen Y grads with my own piece, Six Best Financial Tips for New Grads.
It’s important for Gen Y to understand that life beyond graduation is more than just life with student loans. Yes, it’s so important that you learn how to get a handle on your debt and make a plan for repayment — which is why I loved all the advice in the guide that tackled this subject.
But there will be life after debt, and that’s what I want to make sure you’re prepared to succeed there. In order to so do, you’ll need to:
- prepare for financial emergencies.
- live frugally and avoid lifestyle inflation.
- get excited about earning more than one income.
- take advantage of benefits, resources, and free money on the table (in the form of an employer match on your 401(k), for example).
- start saving for retirement (yes, start saving now).
- make your own opportunities in order to build a life you love.
If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed by your finances after graduation, here’s what you need to do:
Don’t panic. Take a deep breath. And grab your copy of Inceptia’s Summer Guide for Grads for 2014.