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Your first full-time job

Starting out on your own

You’re excited – you’ve landed your first “real” job – and now you can finally start building a life on your own that’s less dependent on your family.

Your salary probably seems like a lot compared to the money you’ve made in the past. But when you add things up, it might seem barely enough to cover your regular bills, such as student loans, rent, internet, cable, phone and other utilities. What would happen if you had a big, unexpected bill to pay for a visit to the ER or an expensive car repair?

While you understand the power of compounding interest and the value of starting a retirement plan early, you just don’t see how you can spare any money right now. And, come on, you want some sort of social life!

Where should you start? Living paycheck to paycheck doesn’t feel good, and you could use some help figuring how to manage your newly-adult finances. Here’s some good news: a financial advisor can help. And you may have benefits at work that can help you, too.

Topics to discuss with an advisor

  • Build a budget
  • Discuss student loans and credit card debt
  • Create a savings plan
  • Compare income and expenses
  • Start an emergency fund

Take advantage of your benefits at work

  • Enroll in your company’s retirement plan and start contributing, even if it’s only a small percentage of your salary
  • Consider enrolling in life and disability insurance – especially if your employer pays some or all of the costs
  • Evaluate supplemental benefits your company may offer, like accident and critical illness insurance