(January 20, 2021)--In simpler times, graduating from college was a celebratory time filled with happiness, hope and ambition. All of your hard work in school paid off with a degree from a good university and you were well on your way to getting a great job that would set you up in life. By getting your diploma you qualified for a professional position with above-average pay and were able to find a nice place to live. Then the pandemic arrived.
The once predictable landscape of employment and post-graduation opportunities became less certain as many industries were affected dramatically. You could still be successful but it became obvious that you also needed to be prudent and get your money straight during this unpredictable time. Fortunately, there are certain steps you can take to lower your monthly expenses and keep your financial future bright.
Get a Handle on Student Loans
One of the financial realities most people face after graduation is that you have a mountain of student loan debt. You may have different loans from each college year, all with different interest rates and payment terms. Sorting through all of the financial details can be overwhelming and confusing at times. If you want to get a handle on your debt but are unsure of how to approach things, there is a guide that can help you understand your options. By doing your research and consulting the guide, you can figure out the best choices for consolidating and refinancing your existing student loan debt. From there you can apply for and get a consolidation loan that has a more attractive interest rate and one, easy monthly payment.
When financial times are uncertain, it helps to take an aggressive approach to saving money each month. You can reduce your monthly expenses if you simply stop buying items until a later date. Each time you have something you really want, put off your purchase decision for 30 days. Then, after a month has gone by, you can get the item if you really feel you still need it then. This greatly reduces budget-breaking impulse purchases. You can also find many of the things you need through local online listings that offer items for free or on buy nothing forums. When you get the items you need this way, you not only save lots of money but you also help the planet by making use of something that might have been thrown away otherwise.
Monthly expenses for housing often take up a third or more of your take home pay. Our free market encourages landlords to take as much of your money as they possibly can. On an entry-level salary, high housing costs make it almost impossible to balance your budget each month. You can live well for less if you get some great roommates and go in on a house together. With the pandemic, and liberal work from home rules in place, you can even get a place on the outskirts of town or in a rural area. By dividing the monthly rent and utility costs between several people you'll keep your housing costs down and save a lot of money over the course of the year.
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