Most kids are not responsible for their finances in a significant way until after they graduate high school. This can be a blissful way to maintain your youthful status, but it can also lead to a huge culture shock when you are faced with having to go from 0 to 100 regarding personal finance. If you are in a situation where you do not have to be burdened by money as a kid, that’s amazing, but the earlier you start to educate yourself on how to handle it when the time comes, and the more of a head start you have on developing healthy habits, the better your relationship with money will be long term.
Get a Head Start
If college is the next step for you after high school, you are in the majority, but do not wait until the last minute to discuss and create a payment plan for your education. Once you have toured schools, applied, and narrowed down your choices for attendance, get the details on tuition costs, as well as room and board, meal plans, and other associated costs so that you begin to understand the significance that this opportunity will have on your financial future. You can take out a student loan with a private lender in order to pay for your education and getting ahead in that research will not only yield the most favorable terms but also give you the best chance for learning exactly what acquiring a student loan means for your post-grad life. Being able to learn about things like interest rates, deferment periods, and loan lifespans when you do not yet have the pressure of the loan will ease that transition for you when the time comes.
Starting to establish habits surrounding money when the risk level is low is a smart choice to make. Use the time that precedes college to learn about money, and how to manage it on a hypothetical level so that you have the tools you need to succeed when the hypothetical becomes reality. Talk to your parents or other influential adults in your life about budgets, and if they have any tips that they can give on how to not feel burdened by financial responsibility. Having these conversations early and often will make it easier for you to be comfortable having them if you find yourself in crisis or chaos financially.
Start to Save
Getting a job, or finding nontraditional ways to earn some cash, and begin to save money as early as possible provides several benefits. Not only will having your own money give you a chance to develop and understand your spending and saving habits, but it also will be the start of what will eventually become your nest egg. Watching your savings grow can be thrilling and the earlier you discover the excitement surrounding money growth, the more successful you will eventually be at adding to and maintaining it. If getting an actual job does not fit your life at this time, think outside the box. Individual services like lawn mowing, child care, and dog walking can all be done close to home, and on a varied schedule giving you the freedom your schedule demands while also creating the opportunity your wallet enjoys.