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Spend Your Hard-Earned Summer Money Wisely

July 25, 2014
The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register

Don't go back to college broke

Roughly half of all college students find summer employment, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While there are no statistics for how much money those in the lucky half were able to successfully save, it's safe to say that for a good portion of millennials, spending and summer fun, go hand in hand.

TheMintGrad, a Northwestern Mutual online resource especially designed for the unique financial needs of 18- to 24-year-olds, has some tricks for helping college students stretch those summer earnings well into the school year.

Article Photos

An external hard drive is a good
investment for your laptop. Try not to spend all that money from your summer job just
having fun.

Photo Provided

One method for preserving summer income earned is setting a savings goal. Whether it's a spring break trip, school books, or a deposit on an off-campus apartment, working toward something tangible is a great motivator. While putting away some of those paychecks may take a bite out of disposable income, students will be grateful when their spring break isn't being spent with their little brother in the backyard blow-up pool. The MintGrad's budget worksheet can help balance savings objectives with other expenditures.

The good news is that while spending money is appealing at any age, Northwestern Mutual's recently released 2014 Planning and Progress Study findings indicate that millennials are ahead of the curve. Nearly 2/3 of respondents 18-24 said they were disciplined or highly disciplined financial planners, more than their grandparents' or parents' generation. This means that with some guidance and support, millennials are well on their way to becoming the most financially responsible generation in history.

The key is prioritizing what to spend on while eliminating those items that are not worth the investment. Some suggestions include:

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