5 Ways to Make the Most of Your Money When You’re Young

Posted by on May 22, 2018 in Economy, Tiny Homes & Frugal Living with 0 Comments

When you’re young, the money isn’t exactly pouring in and your newly-found independence comes with financial responsibilities. That’s why it’s so important to make the most of your income when you’re venturing out into the big bad world for the first time. Whether you choose a college, the workforce, or to travel the world after you first leave the nest, you’re going to need a way to support yourself. Some are lucky enough to live off of their parent’s generosity, but for most of us, this isn’t the case. Whether you’re freshly graduating from high school or college, here are some money-making and saving tips to help you get started.

(1) Get a Job

Finding employment when you’re young and lacking experience is extremely difficult. Jobs just don’t magically grow on trees, so how do you find one? If you took the collegiate route, you should be able to find internships in your related field before or after you graduate. Internships are a great way to build up a work portfolio and gain experience before starting a career. Unless you’re still in school, steer clear of unpaid internships that rarely give you the experience you deserve for the time spent working for free.

For those who passed on college, you’ll need to figure what it is you want to do for a living before you end up waiting tables or working a drive-through window for the rest of your life. It shouldn’t be hard to find unskilled labor positions to generate income. Just make sure you keep looking for trades and businesses that better suit your long-term needs while you gain basic experience references.


(2) Taxes

Filing taxes for the first time? Don’t stress! The IRS has a fairly simple system in place to make sure anyone can understand how to best file their tax returns. If you’re ever unsure of your abilities, there are plenty of online resources to guide you through the process. The best thing to do is claim 0 for all of your filings. When you’re young, you probably don’t have any dependents or reasons to claim anything else. The IRS will deduct the maximum amount possible out of your paycheck, but you will likely get a huge chunk of it back once your filing has been processed. If your return isn’t what you expected, you can always file IRS Form 843 to claim a refund or request an abatement of certain taxes, interest, penalties, fees, and additions to tax.

(3) Cook at Home

Eating at restaurants and fast food establishments is always more costly (and often less healthy) than making meals at home. If your parents never taught you how to cook for yourself, it’s time that you learn. There are a variety of great resources online when it comes to learning new recipes. YouTube channels like 30-minute meals and Tasty are an excellent resource for up and coming young chefs.

(4) Live With Roommates

Depending on your geographical location, having your own apartment can be extremely expensive. Consider renting a large house with multiple rooms that you and your friends can share instead. Even if you’ve just graduated from college and you’ve landed a reasonably high paying job, you should still live with roommates. Any extra income you aren’t spending on rent can be put towards your savings or retirement accounts so that you can eventually buy a house or take a trip to Europe.

(5) Share a Car or Use Public Transportation

Unless mom and dad are covering the cost of insurance and gas, owning and maintaining your own vehicle is expensive. One way to cut down on costs is to share your car with a sibling or someone you’re in a long-term relationship with.

Alternatively, ditch the wheels for public transportation or an Uber flat-rate deal. Uber is an especially lucrative alternative if the public transportation in your town or city doesn’t meet your needs. When you calculate the costs of insurance, gas, parking, repairs, registration, and everything else that comes with owning a car, it’s hard to justify owning one over using ride-share apps.


Young people make mistakes all the time, but being financially irresponsible is rarely a mistake that you can afford. Use these helpful tips as you set yourself up for a successful financial future.

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