You've made it! You worked hard, you passed your classes, and you're about to have this legendary thing we call a "diploma" at your disposal.
So what's next?
Here are some tips to help you stay on top of your finances as you finish school and prepare to use that awesome degree:
I have a job... Now what?
Many BYU students graduate with their first full-time position already lined up. Plan your career carefully throughout your time as a student to prepare yourself properly. If you're currently considering a full-time job offer, make certain you visit this job evaluation checklist to stay on track financially. Make certain to discuss employee benefits such as retirement planning, insurance, and investments with your potential employers. Money management can also seem daunting as you make this transition, so click here for 6 easy steps that can help you plan your finances carefully during this time. As you continue to make preparations, don't forget to also plan for any moving expenses and travel costs.
Career Transition Workshop
Transitioning from being a full-time student (and perhaps a part-time employee) to being a full-time employee with a college degree is a huge change. Before you go, it's a good idea to get some guidance from our trusted advisement centers here at BYU. Click here to learn more about the services offered by University Career Services.
Do I Need a Financial Planner?
Choosing a financial planner (or deciding if you need one or not) can be a daunting task! Click here for an informative Wall Street Journal article that is sure to be helpful to you as you weigh your options and make your decision.
What Sources Can I Trust for Information?
Whether you're learning to adjust to a new budget or find insurance, it's hard to tell which sources of information will be the most helpful and accurate. Here is a list of sources that you might find helpful:
- Insurance Information Institute. This website was created by insurance professionals to provide accurate information to consumers seeking honest insurance resources. They are not sponsored by any insurance companies, so they do not have any interest in promoting any specific corporation. They also provide many online brochures and articles to answer almost any question you could have about finding the right insurance for your situation.
- Helpful financial publications. This is a list of recommended reading from the BYU Financial Fitness Center that can assist you in your transition to the "real world."
- Other helpful links. This is a list of websites that could be useful to you in managing your finances anytime.
- Online Financial Calculators. There are reliable financial calculators you can use from the comfort of your own home to answer just about any financial FAQ imaginable. Click the link to get started!
Cost of Living Calculator
You've probably seen that salaries for certain professions are higher in different cities across the country, but have you checked to make sure the salary hikes make up for any differences in living expenses in those areas? Use these calculators to help you make an informed decision for where you want to end up professionally:
CNN Money Cost of Living Calculator
Bankrate Cost of Living Calculator (if you're moving)
NerdWallet Cost of Living Calculator
Other Helpful Tips
- Alumni receive huge discounts on life, home, health, and auto insurance through the BYU Alumni Association. Click here to learn more.
- Make sure you've filled out your tax forms correctly and have taken out the exemptions for which you qualify.
- Do you have a well-structured budget and spending plan? Make sure you keep track of all your expenses. Do your research on how much everything costs to keep your expectations realistic. Create a spending plan and use our budget calculator for more help.
- Keep certain aspects of your finances mobile so that you can easily monitor your spending and save money. Here are some cool apps that can help you.
- Make sure to keep an emergency fund for a rainy day, including food storage and some cash on-hand.
- Have you been building your credit? Make sure you're doing everything you can to keep your credit score up so you can buy the car and house you want. Click here to learn more.
- Do you have realistic expectations when it comes to repaying your student loans? Use our loan calculator to get a better idea of how long it will take you to repay the loan and the impact it will have on your financial goals.
- If you are going to be living in an apartment, get renter's insurance. You are at a point in your life at which it would be devastating to have to repay any losses due to theft or damage caused by poor infrastructure or weather. Renter's insurance is inexpensive and can save you a lot of stress and cash in the long run.
- Have you already begun your retirement planning? If not, now is absolutely the time to start.
- Start wisely investing your money. Click here to learn the basic investment principles you need to know to begin.
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