I did not know whether to say what every graduate should know or what every doctor, mba, ca, engineer should know. It is what my view is about what every kid coming into the job market should know:

1.The Gross salary that a company offers to pay you and the net salary that you get EVERY month is very different! The CTC – is the cost to the company, the net take home is very different because of provident fund, profession tax, income tax, etc. Also some part of the CTC is paid on a quarterly or annual basis – leave travel, medical, etc. Please understand all this while negotiating / accepting your salary.

2. Do not compare Rupee salary at all: If you have lived all your life in Baroda, Salem, Darjeeling, Srinagar DO NOT be tempted by the HIGH sounding salaries of Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi etc. The rents at these places, the fast life, the eating out costs, the travel will all leave you with very little money at the end of the month. So do a quick estimate of what you will earn (see point 1), what you will spend and therefore what you will have as a surplus to invest BEFORE you say yes to the job.

3. If you have to change geography for a new job, find out the shifting costs. It should be worthwhile especially if you are not sure whether you will like the new place. Simple? You will be surprised.

4. Make a realistic budget, and compare actuals with the estimate, the difference can be shocking to say the least.

5. Tracking expenses is fine, track cash flow also.

6. If the equivalent of ATM is DAD or MOM, fine. If not build an emergency cash fund. Make sure it has 3-4 months expenses at least. It is a cruel world, jobs do not last permanently.

7. Apply, and keep a credit card and make sure you pay ON TIME every time. Helps you build a credit history. However make sure that you do not splurge and wonder from where you will pay. That can harm your credit card score.

8. As soon as you earn, start saving and investing. Enough articles on this blog covering savings, housing, real estate, investing, mutual funds, life insurance….keep reading.

9. Always nice to use the debit card, but using a credit card and paying off on time teaches discipline like nothing else can!

10. Get some TERM life insurance – remember you are an important part of your parent’s future cash flow requirements. Be careful.

 

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  1. Nice post. However, I disagree with point #7 and #9. Credit cards are the best way to overshoot expenses over income. There is no need of a credit card to learn financial discipline. Yes, having a credit card can boost your credit score, but missing one payment will cause disaster, in this regard. So, at least for the college outs, it is better not to have a credit card at least for some time.

  2. @Kishore,

    There is simple rule, Credit Card Gives you a super flexibility at places. So when you spend on something using Credit Card, set aside that amount in the bank (virtually or really). if you can’t just don’t spend 🙂
    -MB

  3. #7 – Use cedit card to gain some points which you can redeem.
    IMP – I have given standing instructions to the bank to get the full card amount from my a/c on the due date. That way i dont pay interest on credit card purhcases.
    Very IMP – I make sure that i use the card for purchases well within my a/c balance.

  4. Hi Subra,
    I cannot understand why you are suggesting credit cards. I think our country is not in such bad position as in USA, as there for everything you need credit history.
    For some reason I dislike credit card and use only debit cards. Is it become problem for me in long term???

    Hi Chirag,
    Just wondering can you share which bank/credit card allows you to take due amount automatically? Just curious to update my knowledge database .. that’s all …

    Regards,
    Shankar

  5. Swipe Credit Card during the day. And make the payment from netbanking once you reach home. Almost like using a debit card with added twin benefits of creating a credit history and earning reward points.
    This approach also helps in avoiding overspending, the main evil of a credit card.
    Ensure your credit card limit stays well within your monthly take home minus your monthly house rent.

  6. re credit card: c’mon -subra is not saying live on money you dont have. he is advocating using plastic money for the convenience.i use credit cards to pay all my regular bills – electricity/phone/gas/net/tv etc.automatically -once set up,the charging is automatic .also set up your internet account to pay the card right on the due date.your time is too important a thing to waste on such trivial errands ,especially when we have this thing called the internet.
    the points are nice to have,but it is a side effect.

  7. Hey, loving this blog, but in the point where you mention that there is enough content on this site is very true, but funding them is extremely difficult. I would love to help with the same in exchange for some gyan :-). Email me as I cannot find a contact form to get in touch directly 🙂 keep blogging!

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