Whether you’re entering the workforce as a full-time employee at age 18 or 22, if you’re done with school, then you’ve got a lot of work ahead of you. Unless you’re a professional athlete, you’re probably going to work for the next 40 years. So, what should your first steps as a “grown-up” be? Here are four easy money moves you should make as soon as you start working full-time…
Look way ahead: You may be in your early 20s now, but at some point, you’re going to blink and you’ll be almost 40. You don’t want to have to play catch-up with your retirement savings, so start saving for those days as soon as you can. If your company has a 401k match, take advantage of that free money. If not, seek out a financial advisor and find out what your best options are.
Plan for emergencies: You can’t foresee losing your job or your car’s engine dying, but you can expect the need for a wad of cash to come out of nowhere. Having a savings account that’s dedicated to emergencies will prepare you for whatever life throws your way.
Get out of debt: If you’ve got student loan debt, pay it off as quick as you can after you’re done with school. Before you decide to get a new ride or buy your first house, use that money to knock your debt down to zero. Once you’re debt free, you can start making decisions about those larger purchases.
Find a side hustle: Another way to be prepared for those money emergencies is to find another source of income. Whether that’s working a weekend job or selling stuff on the internet, having a second source of income will come in handy if something happens to the first one.