In my post last week I talked about how I'm oh so happy that school is done forever. However, even though there are so many reasons for why I am happy and things I looked forward to when graduating, there are also many things that new graduates are not told about.
Since I have lived on my own since I was 18, and I've had to pay for all of my own things (I rented a house at 18 and have worked full-time since 16), I pretty much know all about bills and how much money I will make. There are no surprises and I am very used to income and expenses.
Not to make this a depressing post or anything, but there are soooo many things out there that are not talked about enough. College graduates are always told about all of the positives of graduating, and possibly no negatives (or very little).
Negatives need to be talked about and realized. Some of my friends who graduated from college just assumed that they would be rolling around in cash and that money would be no problem.
1. You might not find a job right away.
Luckily I had a full-time job during college, so I wasn't as worried about money, but of course I still wanted to find something in my field. Some people told me that I wouldn't find a job right away, and others told me that it would be a piece of cake. Luckily I was able to find several jobs that interested me.
However, I have a lot of friends who either didn't try hard enough to find a job or they were overly optimistic. Some friends thought that jobs would just land right in their laps and hardly ever applied for a job, or they thought that they didn't have to try as hard since they had a college degree. BOY were they wrong! You still need to try and put a lot of effort into your applications.
2. Bills will add up quickly.
If you've never really had a lot of bills before (or any at all), then all of your new bills might throw you off completely. There's an apartment or house to think about, possible car payments, car insurance, health insurance, food, electricity and everything else.
If you buy a house, then there are many others things to think about. Where and how will you choose your house? What about maintenance costs? These things all add up quickly.
You need to think about how quickly everything will add up, and also think about #3 in the section below.
3. Your paycheck isn't as big as you think it'll be.
Think you should just take your salary and divide it by 12, and that's what you have to spend each month? NO! Depending on how your paid, if you just divide it by 12, then some months you will be extremely short.
For example, if your pay is $40,000 (lets forget about taxes for just one second) and you divide it by 12 months exactly, then you will have around $3,333 per month. However, what if you're paid every 2 weeks and not twice a month? This would leave you with a little less than $3,100 a month. This is a difference of over $200 per month between what you think you'll have any how much you actually have.
Also, of course taxes and everything else need to be taken into account. Taxes can vary but most new graduates who haven't had a full-time job before will most likely be extremely shocked by how much is taken out due to taxes.
Before you start buying stuff like crazy, you should get a realistic feel of what your first couple of paychecks will be like. Waiting until you actually receive them might be the best idea before you start buying things.
Other things you might not have thought about enough:
- You might not even like the field that you went to school for.
- You might find a job that you love that you never thought you'd enter.
- Your student loans will be a lot more each month than you really think.
What do you wish you knew when you graduated?
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