The sooner you start saving, the better. It’s never too early (or too late) to start. The teen years are the perfect time to pick up smart saving habits to become financially independent sooner.
While your friends may be out spending money on clothes and other impulse purchases, you’ll be well ahead of the game if you start making smarter purchasing decisions now and start saving.
Start a savings account
If you already have a regular banking account, or even if you don’t, now is the time to start a savings account. It’s a good idea to find a savings account where the more often you put money in, the more interest you make.
It’s unlikely you’ll be saving a lot of money and making interest by having lots in your account, so it’s a good idea to change up the interest by having a larger interest rate, the more often you deposit.
While you may feel unmotivated to save your money when you’re not making much, even $10 a month is a great start and will accrue interest over time.
It’s also a good idea just to get into the habit of regularly putting money aside to save.
Don’t pick up the debt
Your teen years are not the time to start going into debt. If you want to make a larger purchase now is the time to save up for it.
Instead of taking out a loan and having to pay off something you likely won’t need or want 5 years down the track.
If you need a new car to get to your part-time job then more power to you, but make sure you buy used for a great deal, rather than buy a new, massively depreciating asset that you’ll likely regret later.
Only buy what you need and save the rest, your future self will thank you.
Budget and keep track of your finances
One of the best and easiest ways to become money smart and financially independent sooner is to keep track of your purchases and create a budget.
Create a log of all of your purchases and set up a budget. You can easily do this with free apps like PersonalCapital or mint or even a simple spreadsheet to keep track of your finances and your budget.
This way you’ll know exactly what money is coming in and what’s going out.
Since you’re reading this, you’re already starting on the right foot but there’s plenty more you can do to get educated about your finances.
Chances are you didn’t learn much about saving money in school but the more you know about your finances, the less you’ll be tied to a job you hate, making money for someone else.
Read books on how to save and be financially responsible and even how to start investing. Be money smart and pick them up for free at your local library.
Listen to podcasts and watch YouTube clips on being financially independent and debt-free. The more you know, the more you save.