Jagari J. – Mater Dei High School

As a young adult, it is easy to get caught up in trying to purchase the newest technology or the most expensive products in an effort to keep up with trends and impress your classmates. This behavior, however, will inevitably lead you to a pool of debt, from which you will struggle to escape. In order to avoid falling into this hole, you must learn how to be smart and efficient savers. Unfortunately, knowing how to save your money is not as easy as one may think, but there are a few key tips you can follow to ensure that you remain debt-free throughout your life.   Firstly, if you want to have as much money saved up as possible, you need to start saving today. The earlier you begin saving your money, the more time the money will have to build up and the more you will eventually accumulate. In order to do this, you must be able to differentiate between the things you want and the things you need. This is particularly important for college students, many of whom struggle to pay for meals because of unnecessary purchases. It is imperative that you always prioritize the things you absolutely need. Once you have bought the most necessary goods and services, any money that is left over can either be spent on the things you want, or it can be saved. The choice of whether or not to save that extra money will depend on your long-term goals.

When discussing saving, it is important that you look to the future. You must always be financially prepared for emergencies and unexpected events. If you have enough money saved for a few months’ worth of purchases, it will provide you with a cushion of time, during which you can get back on your feet and recover from any unexpected event. Additionally, consistent saving is necessary when looking at making large, expensive investments, such as houses or cars. One way to ensure that you always have money in your savings account is to use a budgeting app, such as EveryDollar or GoodBudget, that allows you to keep track of your cash flow and know exactly how much of your income should be saved. You can also set up automatic transactions to your savings accounts, so you never have to worry about forgetting to transfer your money.

The most important thing to remember when trying to remain debt-free is to be smart about the decisions you make now, because they will impact the decisions you are able to make later. The future starts now, and the earlier you start working toward achieving your dreams, the earlier they will come to fruition.