Graduating is certainly a special time in everyone’s life. It signifies a major move from childhood to adulthood, and there is an overwhelming excitement as you branch out and begin to figure things out on your own.
Sure, you did have to figure out a lot of things on your own (this is where you give a big shout-out to YouTube for helping you) when you went away to college, but this is different. Now you have to learn about direct deposit, medical insurance, and probably a 401(k). In addition to this you should probably start thinking about buying a house and settling down somewhere that you will ultimately call home.
With all of these decisions looming, where do you possibly start?
First Things First
If you truly want to succeed in life after college, you absolutely need to dump whatever debt you may have accumulated over the prior 4 years. Many average Joe’s might try to tell you different (because it’s all they know), but according to millionaires, this is the most important step to becoming wealthy in the future. If I were you, I would listen to the millionaires. So this means getting rid of your student loans and any credit card debt that you have acquired.
Next, you need to be sure that you do not acquire any new debt. DO NOT congratulate yourself by purchasing a new car. You might think that you deserve it and that you will look important to everyone around you, but to the financial responsible you are merely stating, “I went through college, learned nothing, and am now being a financial idiot.” Believe me, people will not be as impressed with your new ride as you think they will be.
Many will also be pushing you into buying a house because that is a real sign of adulthood. Do not be fooled. While houses may appreciate in value, they are not essential to building wealth. If you can find some cheap rent in a small apartment near work, you will likely gain wealth much faster than those that are paying interest on a massive home loan.
Invest Like There’s No Tomorrow
After you decide to get through life without any debt (this, by the way, puts you miles ahead of your friends and family that are buying everything on credit today), you can start to amass some major wealth in a short period of time.
The average person invests nothing for their future. This is just plain stupid.
The above average and seemingly strange person socks away 10% of their income and puts it toward their future retirement. This is will allow them to retire comfortably by the age of 65.
The insane individual today gives a lot of thought toward the future and puts 50% of their income toward their retirement with the hope of retiring very early. This leads to amazingness.
Obviously, investing nothing is a terrible idea for your future. What you really want to do is invest a portion of every paycheck and keep your eyes open for income producing assets such as real estate or small business ventures. If you continually put your money toward ventures that pay you more money, you will be set for life.
Are you ready to not only survive, but thrive after graduation?