Financial and life advice for graduating students

Congratulations to the Esterhazy High School Graduation Class of 2015.  As an Investment Advisor with RBC Dominion Securities I am fortunate to work with many successful clients who have accumulated a large of amount of wealth over their lifetime.  I’d like to share with you some commonalities of their lifestyle and money habits, as this wisdom is not traditionally taught in school.

1.    Early in life use a majority of your borrowing power to purchase assets that either appreciate in value or have the ability to increase your income.

2.    Budget.  Establish a budget whereby you pay yourself first.  If you start 12 months from now at age 19, using a 7% return, a simple $75 per month saving plan will grow to approximately $14,700 at 29, $41,900 at 39, $95,300 at 49, and $200,400 at 59.  Imagine, what the amount would be if we used $200 per month.

3.    Stay active.  You cannot fully enjoy your wealth with out your health.

4.    Pay your bills in full and on time.  This will help you maintain your credit rating and allow you to borrow money at lower rates.  This means more money in your pocket.

5.    It is important to live within what you can afford, not what others appear to afford.

6.    There is some truth to the saying “Those who don’t learn, get the shovel.”  Learning is constant.  No matter how small the course/education/training seminar, take advantage of it.  It will increase your income or provide opportunities along the way.

7.    Make the world a better place.  Giving back to your community is a way of saying thank-you for all the opportunity it has provided you.  This can be done by volunteering or financially.

8.    Stay away from store credit cards.  At 28.9% interest they are like financial quicksand.  The store rewards aren’t worth the potential cost.

9.    Set goals.  Write them down and put them where you can view them as a daily reminder.  You will be amazed on how those goals are eventually achieved.

10.    Believe in yourself.  Put your best foot forward, and opportunities will arise.

This article is supplied by Kevin Zazula, an Investment Advisor and Financial Planner with RBC Dominion Securities Inc. Member CIPF.

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