College graduation is a major accomplishment that can symbolize new beginnings. With tons of exciting opportunities available, it's important to have a solid financial plan in place. As you embark on new adventures, your financial plan can serve as a way to keep you responsible with your money.
Start Job Hunting Early
Soon after graduation you'll need to start thinking about finding your first full-time job. It can be beneficial to start looking for a job before you walk across the stage because you'll find more opportunities, and won't feel rushed into taking a job that might not necessarily be the best fit for you. To start your search, make sure your resume is up to date. If you want to guarantee that your resume makes a good first impression, utilize these resume strategies to stand out to future employers. Another underrated way to find a job post-graduation is through networking. Chances are that in your college years you were networking with peers and staff more than you know. Take advantage of your networking connections to scope out new career opportunities that may be available to you. The sooner you start the job search process, the more prepared you'll be for your financial future.
Live Within Your Means
For a lot of college graduates, transitioning to a salary-based job will
enable you to be more financially stable. This is probably the first time you’ll be making a substantial amount of money, and with more money comes more responsibility. Once you start earning money it can be tempting to spend it quickly and impulsively. You'll need to come up with a spending plan so that you can be responsible with your funds. Consider what your monthly expenses will be and create a plan to ensure that you're not overspending. Look into utilizing budgeting apps to help you stay on track. By living within your means, you're putting yourself in a better position for the future. You can avoid debt and bad credit issues by staying within your budget. When you live within your means, you're providing yourself with a better chance for financial success down the road.
Find a Side Hustle
Side hustles are a great way to bring in some extra cash. A side hustle is anything that can earn you more money outside of your regular 9 to 5 job. And nowadays, there are a variety of ways to add a second stream of income that you can use to your advantage. You can start by thinking of your different interests outside of work such as child care, art, or even animals. If you're passionate about animals, look into dog sitting or walking. If you're artistic, you can create and sell your own work. Picking a side hustle that you're passionate about will keep you feeling motivated and it won’t feel like a job. If a side hustle sounds interesting to you, check out these other side hustle ideas to get started.
Continue to Learn
Personal finances are something that you’ll have to continue to learn about over time. As you go through different lifestyle changes and stages, your finances will have to adjust to your goals and circumstances. Make it a priority to keep learning and expanding upon your financial knowledge. After graduation it can be wise to start brainstorming for a 5 year plan. It can include goals such as paying off student loans or even saving for a house. You'll need to learn as much as you can about your goals and think of ways to achieve them. For instance, learning how to get pre approved for a home loan can be a great jumping off point as you begin working toward your homeownership goals. This will inform you of how much you can realistically afford. It's important to consider the different effects of the economy as well. Reading different news sources to brush up on the state of the economy can help you put things into perspective. Taking a few minutes out of your day to read through the news can help ensure that you're making the right financial decisions for the time being. For example, with inflation being high, learning how to grow your income can come in handy as you face different economic challenges. Taking responsibility for your personal finances will make all of the difference as you embark on new personal journeys. By continuing to learn about finances you’ll be able to put yourself in a stronger financial position.
With so many new and exciting opportunities available to graduates, it's extremely important to have a solid understanding of personal finance. Finding your dream job and utilizing a side hustle can help increase your earnings and provide you with more stability. Living within your means and expanding your knowledge will help keep you on track for successful adult years.