A cautionary tale about debt from a friend of mine…
As a young adult in todays’ world, I’m quickly learning that the knowledge of Algebra is not paying my bills. Here’s three financial topics that most young adults in 2015 don’t have a complete grasp on:
- Building Credit
- Paying Bills
- Building Credit/Paying Bills
As a teenager, I had no debt. I went to school, came home, and re-lived the same old song day by day. Now, in my 20’s, I’ve acquired a debt that has now taken over my life. At a young age, I finally got approved for a credit card and thought to myself, “Wow, all this money and all I have to do is pay it back overtime… No big deal!”. Well, it turned into a very big deal now that my debt outweighs my income. With a low income, I’ve had to sacrifice a lot, but I feel this is one of the hardships of life, and we all have to learn it one way or another.
I may have a large debt, but I have never missed a payment and have always been on time. This has kept my credit score at an overall average score, (although it should be worse than average because of how much debt I have on multiple credit cards). I’m learning the hard way how to manage my money, but overall it’s molding me for my future.
Always keep track of everything! Every penny you spend, write it down!! This is very annoying at times, but I assure you that you will not overdraft your account if you keep track of your money and what you’re doing with it.
Once you’ve began taking note of all your expenses, begin eliminating the unnecessary. Would you rather pay $100 a month for cable or $10 dollars a month for Netflix that provides you with hundreds of movies and television series? (Yes, you’ll give up cable for now, but can get it back once you’ve dug yourself out of debt)
Make lists. Make lists when buying groceries, make lists of all your monthly bills, make lists!!!
A savings account is very important. When a young adult goes off into the real world without Mom or Dad leading the way, you’re going to need funds to survive on your own. A savings account is like money stored under the couch that you forget about… which is a good thing! Obviously, keep track of what’s in your savings account, but don’t find a reason to touch it!
If friends want to go out for a night of fun, make sure to know about it ahead of time so you can save! This is a good managing technique so that you can continue to pay your bills on time and also enjoy a night out with friends during this hectic time in your life.
These tips by no means will make your life debt-free, but it will keep your life a little more stress-free and overtime will help you better understand yourself and managing your finances.
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