Just out of college? First financial steps important

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By jane Young

After finishing school and hopefully landing a rewarding job, college graduates face myriad financial obligations and opportunities. Here are some steps for graduates to get started in the right direction:

– Create a budget and live below your means. Based on your income, create a spending plan that leaves you with a little extra money at the end of the month. Your budget should include saving at least 10 percent of your gross income. Spend less than you earn so you are prepared for unexpected bumps in the road. Initially, this may involve renting a smaller apartment, living with roommates or driving an older car.

As your career progresses, avoid increasing expenses in lockstep with earnings increases.

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