Success is something everyone wants to attain and there’s no one way to do it. However, for those who have invested a lot of time and money into getting a college degree, it’s a high risk gamble once those student loan payments kick in.
When you start to consider all of the other necessities that come with transitioning to the real world — rent deposits, car payments and other living expenses — it becomes clear just how real the struggle can get. According to a Forbes study on student debt, many affected by high loan payments often have to postpone major life events such as marriage, purchasing a home, having children or saving for retirement.
Of the roughly 8,000 people that participated in the survey, 9/10 student borrowers reported that they are struggling to make payments leading many to refinance and ultimately extend their debt payment plans over the recommended 10 year period. Additionally, for every three student borrowers, one has claimed that their monthly loan payment is more than their monthly rent or mortgage expense.
So how can you set yourself up to succeed financially after you’ve walked the stage and received your degree? Here’s four ways to help you set yourself up for success following college graduation.
Find a Job That Fits Your Lifestyle
In today’s workforce, there are plenty of options. Don’t settle for the first one that offers you a position. When you’re interviewing, make sure that place of employment offers benefits that fit your lifestyle. For example, if you’re a new grad and funds are a little tight, it may be best to look for a company that offers health insurance plans that will better fit your budget until you get back on your feet.
There are also several other benefits to keep in mind. Many companies now offer technology while you’re working there that make the job a little more convenient. Flexible and remote hours are growing in popularity so be sure to ask about all of the possible benefits when interviewing for a job.
Don’t Blow Your First Couple Paychecks
When your first paycheck comes in, the last thing you’re probably thinking of is how much of it you can put in the bank. But instead of spending frivolously, think about your expenses and develop an easy to use budget that includes leisure funds.
After college, you’re likely going to have to move out, get your own car and start buying groceries. Then there are expenses on top of those expenses — you probably have to furnish your apartment, pay for your car’s gas and make sure the electricity stays on so your groceries don’t rot!
To keep costs at a minimum, try some helpful alternatives. Furnish your home with seating from a discount furniture store that is both stylish and affordable, ride a bike to accessible places to save money on gas or purchase energy efficient appliances that will cut costs on your electric bill each month.
Get a Side Hustle
While it’s not always ideal to spend time working when you’re supposed to be off, sometimes it’s necessary. Many people work seasonal jobs that are based on availability to make extra cash on the side. Becoming an Uber driver is also a great way to earn some spending money while sticking to your preferred schedule.
If you’re more into keeping your side business at home, there are also ways to make money online. Blogging has been known to be a profitable venture and can improve your social media presence, leading to further opportunities.
Start a New Hobby
Doing your absolute best at work is a must to succeed after college graduation. However, your life shouldn’t be completely consumed by work. Prevent high stress or burnout and stay in tip-top shape by starting a new hobby.
Join a local running group, find a team for a volleyball league or try picking up a new instrument. No matter what you prefer, finding something that is low cost and helps you unwind is key to creating a positive work-life balance.