Class of 2021: 8 financial tips for High School students

Class of 2021: 8 financial tips for High School Students

The school year is ending and the graduates of 2021 should already begin to think like responsible adults. Here are 8 financial tips for high school students to start planning their financial future.

These days many students have received their diploma and are saying goodbye to their high school years and, although it seems rushed, this is the perfect time to start thinking about personal finances.

If you have just graduated from high school, you have many options you must analyse. Here is some advice to help you create good habits and get started on the right foot  

You may be planning to go to college in the fall or you may decide to join the military.You may want to work full time or you may plan on taking a year off to decide what to do with your life. Your parents may be willing to help you get set up, or you may have to take  care of your expenses on your own. These 8 financial tips  will help you, regardless of your situation.

1-Plan a Budget

The first thing you need to do to is to set up a budget. This will vary according to your plans. A budger that deals with going to college will include your school expenses,  a budget if you plan to work should take into account how much it will cost to move out and how much you need to have saved up for a deposit on an apartment. In every case, you will also need to budget for expenses such as clothes, food, and fun. 

2-Set Priorities For Your Spending

It is important to prioritize your spending so that you are moving towards your financial goals and this needs more tan just a budget. Make short-term goals such as saving up for the deposit on your first apartment or for the down payment on a car, and be sure to set money aside for that. Your grants and student loans do not cover all of your college expenses so you must also keep  in mind saving money for them.

With a high school diploma, or even better - a college degree, you're more likely to land a job that provides a higher salary

3-Make Plans for Your Future

Wthout a financial plan, chances are you will not be ready when you want to take the next step. This can include buying your fist apartment, buying a new car or getting married. Although these things may sound like they are very far away, you can already start planning for them.
Putting money aside to cover down payments or added expenses will allow you to be ready when the time comes to do these things. If you are in college, you may be more focused on avoiding student loan debt than saving for the future. Also, if you are going straight into the workforce, it's best to start saving now. Create a five-year plan that will outline your goals for the next years.

4-Establish Your Credit

Establishing your credit now is important. Making on-time payments for a car loan or on your apartment can help you do this.  Part of establishing good credit is also making sure that you do not make any mistakes with your cards. Be sure to pay off your balance in full and on time each month.
You can ask your parents if they are willing to add you as an authorized user on their accoun as a first option. Bear in mind that you cannot apply for credit under age 18 at all, and if you are under age 21 you will need to show proof of ability to repay. 

5-Plan your career

If you are not already planning on going to college, then you should look into other training options or explore other ways to set yourself up for a successful career. Completing a college degree or pursuing vocational training can improve your financial future.
If you are already planning on college, you need to set up a college budget and determine how much you need to earn to cover college costs.
Take the student loan counseling that your college offers seriously because your loan choices will really impact your finances for years to come.

6-Balance Your Checkbook and Use Money Apps

Using an app that handles both budgeting and balancing your account can make it much easier to do. Taking the time to balance your checkbook each week can help you save money in overdraft fees. It will also help you avoid a mess that can be difficult to bounce back from.

A high school diploma can help you land a job that you can call a career well into adulthood

7-Create an emergency fund

Expenses will come up that you do not expect—from computer repairs to medical bills. If your parents can help you through college, they may be willing to help with this too, but you are now ultimately responsible for these expenses. Thinking about insurance is an impoortant ítem too. Your parents may help with your health or car insurance but there may be unexpected things you have to pay for.  An emergency fund can help you cover these things and take the pressure off. Start saving a bit every month, till you have a fund equivalent to a year’s salary.

8-Be Smart With Your Money

Starting out with solid financial habits will set up a good foundation, so be sure that you are making smart money choices when you graduate. This includes paying your bills on time and carefully evaluating decisions like when to take on additional debt for a car or on credit cards. Your wise choices today will help you out of spending years recovering from mistakes.

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