Set Yourself Up for Financial Success - Money Tips for Teenagers
As a teenager, you are in a very powerful position financially. You have your entire life ahead of you, and if you start creating good financial decisions now, you will ensure your financial success in the future.
We have put together five money tips for you that will help you set yourself up for financial success.
1. Start saving now
The time value of money is very real and very valuable. Take a look at this article to find out how compound interest works and how putting aside money now will get you on your way to being a millionaire at retirement.
Now, retirement is a long way away, but there’s no reason to not think about it now. Look into opening a Roth IRA to start putting money away and taking advantage of the larger compound interest available in these savings accounts. If you are under the age of 18, you will need to get a guardian to open the account for you.
2. Apply for as many scholarships as possible
If you are going to be attending college, start applying for as many scholarships as possible. If you can avoid taking out student loan debt (or at least minimize your debt), you will be walking into adulthood ahead of most. Student loan debt is crushing college graduates and the struggle to pay off the debts means that they are not able to put as much into savings or investments.
There is a wealth of scholarships available to college students (both entering and continuing students), you just need to apply. Click the button below to find a list of databases that can help you find scholarships that are relevant to you:
3. Track your spending
Unless you have regular bills (like a phone bill or car insurance), you don’t really need to set up a traditional budget. That said, you should still get into the habit of tracking your spending now.
Tracking your spending can be as simple as keeping a notebook of what you bought, when you bought it, and how much you spent. Getting into this habit now will make it so much easier on yourself when it does come time to create a budget. It can also help you see if there are any areas of your life where you are overspending.
4. Take advantage of student discounts
There are tons of retailers and service providers that offer student discounts to those who have a valid student ID. If you are already shopping at these stores, don’t miss out on the opportunity to save a few bucks!
Gift Card Granny and The Simple Dollar offer two great lists of places that offer student discounts. But, don’t just look at these lists. Get into the habit of asking for a student discount everywhere you go. The worst they can say is no, but more often than not, you’ll be enjoying a few dollars off your purchase.
5. Protect your identity
This is a big one. Identity theft can create a long and stressful financial battle. You do not want to be dealing with identity theft when you are juggling school, work, and extra curriculars. Taking steps to protect your identity now will help both your present and future self.
Here is an excellent article from Consumer Reports that gives you a good guide on how to protect your identity.