Prepare Your High School Grad

As your high school graduate leaves for college or is entering the workforce, make sure to educate them about their own personal finances.

It's exciting for them to go out and get their first job, but what many of them do not realize is they will not receive 100% of their earnings. A vast majority of teenagers have no idea that they have to pay payroll taxes out of their wages. Explain to them what a W4 form is and how to fill one out. Does your graduate have a bank account? Are they aware that there are charges if they overdraft their account?

Do they know about identity theft and bank fraud? These types of issues often go overlooked until it's too late. Make sure they know not to give their personal information to ANYONE who calls them. It's also a good idea to make them aware of how much money they need to live. Teach your grad about the expenses they will incur when they are out on their own. Share a little bit of your own personal situation with them. Let them know what some of your expenses are so they understand how much groceries, utilities, rent and other expenses cost.

You will not find many teenagers without their cellphones! Show them some apps that can help them track their finances. This can include their bank, insurance company or a site such as Mint.com. Mint.com has an app that allows you to see where you have been spending your money and helps to setup an easy budget!

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