Financial Tips for High School Graduates: What Millennials Should Know

Congratulations! You or someone you know is about to graduate high school. They’ve ordered their cap and gown and are ready to walk across the graduation stage. It’s an awesome milestone; yet, at the same time, there are many upcoming responsibilities to consider. As they transition into the chapter of adulthood, there may be a lot of questions about what they should expect when it comes to their money. We’ve filled this post with great information and are ready to share 5 financial tips for high school graduates.

Don’t forget to share this article to your graduate’s Facebook timeline!

1. Credit is not the enemy

Simply put, for our first of 5 financial tips for high school graduates, credit is not the enemy. It is necessary. One needs credit to finance cars, rent apartments, or even buy houses later on in life. However, things tend to get ugly when credit is improperly used. We get it. For a young adult, it’s tempting to charge everything to a credit card. But to coincide with the saying that credit is not the enemy, goes the notion that it must also be used wisely.


1) By understanding it’s never too early to begin building your credit.

2) Realizing that just because you have the ability to charge, doesn’t mean you should.

3) And also keeping a rule to never charge what you cannot afford to pay in full by the time the bill comes.

2. Establish your own checking and savings accounts

Checking and savings accounts work differently and every young adult should establish their own. Checking accounts are meant to have routine transactions and a consistent flow of money exchanges. This is acceptable even on a daily basis. To the contrary, however, savings accounts are for longer termed holding. By having an independent account, a new graduate can track their purchases easier. They can see firsthand how. and where. their money is coming or going. In addition, they can also view that they are the sole creator of the account’s fluctuations. There’s a heightened sense of ownership and that’s why it’s part of our 5 financial tips for high school graduates.

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3. Wages and benefits matter

Most high school graduates are happy just to land their first job. But having a job does not put you in the financial clear. In truth, most millennials do not take wages and company benefits as seriously as their more experienced counterparts. “Not negotiating your first salary in a low-wage job can amount to a sacrifice of half a million dollars over the course of a career,” says Sara Laschever, a negotiating expert and principal interviewer for Project Access, a landmark Harvard University study. Equally as important, 401k and retirement benefits. 

4. Remember your taxes

Make sure to fill out an I-9 with your employer and prepare for a portion of your wages to be given towards taxes.

5. Start paying your student loans before you have to

If your high school graduate enrolls in college, it’s a good idea to start knocking out student loan debt as soon as possible. Even though there are usually grace periods for payment, there are no grace periods for interest. Contact your loan servicer to see the earliest time you can begin paying.

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