How College Graduates Can Build and Protect Assets
The month of May is a busy one for college students, filled with final exams and last minute assignments. For those about to graduate, congratulations! In the midst of commencement exercises and graduation parties with family and friends, you are likely beginning to feel some pressure about your future and your financial security. Whether you already have a job lined up in your chosen career field or are still sending out resumes, it is not too early to begin thinking about ways to build and protect your assets. The following are four tips to help you get started down the right path at this important time in your life.
- Calculate your current assets and liabilities.
One of the first important steps in money management is knowing exactly where you stand. Make a list of any assets you own, such as money in bank accounts or investments and personal property, such as your car. Then, make a list of your liabilities. Include credit cards, personal loans, and other types of debts. Total these amounts then subtract your liabilities from your assets. This is your net worth. Think Advisor warns not to be discouraged if you are in the negative. As you are just beginning your career, you have plenty of time to reverse these numbers.
- Make a budget and stick to it.
With your list of assets and liabilities in hand, you can now work on creating a realistic budget. Calculate what you can afford in terms of rent, food, clothing, and personal items. Make paying down debt a priority and do not forget to put something away in your savings each pay period.
- Save for retirement.
It is never too early to save for retirement. Making regular contributions is often not a priority for people in their twenties, but this is the ideal time to begin saving. BankRate advises that without a mortgage or family, you have a huge advantage in terms of building wealth while any money you do save will benefit from the interest that will accrue over the years.
- Create an estate plan.
While end of life matters are likely far from your mind and you may not currently possess many assets, it is still a smart idea to have an estate plan in place. Creating a will should be at the top of your list. If you die without one, any money or property you do possess will have to go through proceedings in the New York probate court, which can be time consuming and costly. Advance directives are important as well. These let your family know your wishes in regards to medical care, in the event you are unable to communicate them yourself.
Contact Us Today for Help
At Cavallo & Cavallo, we provide the trusted legal guidance you need as you make the transition from college student to working adult. Contact our Bronx & Westchester estate planning attorneys today and request a consultation in our office to discuss how we can assist you.