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Easy financial tips for recent college graduates

Recent college graduates should be proud and excited about passing such an important life milestone, but once the dust settles and reality sets in, there are plenty of new challenges to overcome. And for post-grads, one of the biggest areas of concern is personal finance.

Even if you have decided to move back home for the foreseeable future, knowing how to manage your money is a critical skill to develop in early adulthood. This will make it possible to stay on top of student loans or other obligations, as well as work toward bigger goals like buying a car or paying for a new apartment. Recent college grads should check out these easy financial tips to start building good habits:

Work out a budget
After you've had your graduation party and celebrated with friends, it's important for every recent college graduate to sit down and work on a personal budget, according to Forbes. This way you can visualize your monthly expenses. Not only is that key for making making sure you have enough to cover student loans and the like, but it will also give you an idea of what salary you will need from a future job. 

Pull up a spreadsheet and list your monthly expenses. This may include rent, utilities and student loan or car payments as well as more variable costs like money for groceries or going out. Make an estimate of what you will need each month, and save this document for future reference.

Find a part-time job
Whether you're still searching for steady employment or you're interested in making a little extra cash, a part-time job may be your best bet. Working at a coffee shop or as a babysitter for a family friend can offer flexible hours and a bit of spending money. Other part-time gigs, such as bartending or waiting tables, can be a fun and exciting means of bringing in some dough. You may also want to consider volunteer opportunities to pad your resume.

Spend within your means
Recent college graduates may not get the benefit of the doubt when it comes to asking mom or dad for some spending money, and making sure you hold yourself accountable for your finances is an essential skill to master. Your credit score can take a serious hit if you skip a student loan or rent payment, making future financial endeavors more difficult. Because you have already sorted out a budget, however, you will be able to know where and when you can splurge on fun stuff.

Find ways to start saving
U.S. News and World Report stated that beginning to set money aside each month is a crucial skill for young adults. A savings account will grow over time and is necessary for emergency situations. Even depositing just a small portion of your earnings each pay period can make a big difference.

By taking paid surveys, you can make money from home online. Put your earnings directly into a savings account, or otherwise use the extra cash to pay for entertainment costs outside of your monthly budget. 


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