Graduating with Student Loans: To Do List

The past couple of weeks have been an exciting one for families across the country.  People have seen their loved ones graduate from college.  While this is an exciting time, it can also be a confusing one.  The recent graduates are hoping to enter the work force.  Some have jobs lined up.  Others do not.  Either way student loans have become the norm for recent graduates.  Here is a quick to do list for all graduates who have the financial burden of student loans upon graduation.

1) Know the Amount

It is crucial that you understand just how much you borrowed during your years of study.  When I graduated, I had no idea how much I owed.  The total ended up being $30,000, but I didn’t have the slightest idea of how much was borrowed during those years.  Total up your numbers and know the amount.

2) Develop a Payback Plan

Student loans tend to have a payback period of ten years.  Decide if you want to take the full ten years to pay them back.  If you have other life goals you might consider paying them back earlier.  I paid off mine in three years.  I was tired of seeing the majority of my paycheck disappearing to loans, but it did feel good to know I bought myself seven more years of saving capability after they were paid off.

3) Reward Milestones 

The process of paying back your student loans can seem insurmountable at the beginning.  Have milestones that you can reward yourself for achieving.  For example, go out to a nice dinner for every $5000 you pay back.  This will continue to motivate you to continue toward the end result of being debt free.

Budget Smart, Invest Wise 

One Year to a Higher Wealth

Small changes can make a big impact.  That is how you can grow your wealth.  Yes, you can win the lottery, but you’re not going to.  Wealth is created through the money and life decisions you make every month, week and even today.  Small decisions now can have a huge impact on your net worth in 30 to 40 years.  It can even make a difference in a year’s time.

Today I am sharing an article that outlines twelve things one can do to increase wealth in just a year.  All twelve might not apply to you, but even doing some of things will make a long term impact on the wealth potential you have.

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/12-ways-richer-now-124529060.html

Budget Smart, Invest Wise

When Your Income Disappears

Have you ever lost a job before?  I’m not talking about a high school job where you hit a parked car and didn’t tell anyone (happened to my cousin).  I’m talking about losing a job in your career, what you studied for.

Losing a job is pretty miserable, but try losing your job on your birthday.  A day of celebration quickly turns into a “Well shit, what am I to do?”  Simple answer: find another one.

No I did not lose my job on my birthday, so I cannot empathize with the person, but a friend of mine did.

If you do lose your job it is not the end of the world.  There are things more important, your health, your relationships.  A job simply provides you money so you can buy food and shelter.  However, having a emergency savings is great when your job does disappear.

We live in a time where machines are quickly becoming smarter and more efficient then man.  A world where companies, governments and everyone wants to cut or eliminate costs.  Fortunately for my friend, an emergency fund is already stashed away.  You can lose your job unexpectedly, you can have a medical emergency.  Having 3-6 months of liquid cash stored away in an account can help you make it through those tough times when your income disappears.

Budget Smart, Invest Wise