Guide for Young Veterans Transitioning to Civilian Life: Mastering Your Finances
How to equip yourself with essential financial skills and strategies to thrive as a young veteran transitioning to civilian life.
Navigating Finances: A Guide for Young Veterans Entering Civilian Life
By Nicole Rubin
The transition from military to civilian life can be challenging, especially when it comes to finances. As a young veteran, you’re likely facing a new set of financial responsibilities and decisions that can feel overwhelming. From managing your finances, building credit, and securing a home to finding a career that aligns with your skills and goals, there’s a lot to consider. Today, we provide some financial tips to help you feel confident and prepared as you navigate this exciting new chapter.
Boosting Your Earning Power Through Education
Continuing your education can help you acquire new skills and knowledge that can increase your earning potential. Advanced education can also help you adapt to a rapidly changing job market and economy. For example, with a degree in business, you’ll have an advantage over the competition when you go to start your own business. Spend some time looking at the options for online business degree programs so you can continue working full-time while going to school. Online college classes tend to be more affordable as well. If you could use some help paying for school, look for scholarships and grants as well as veteran education benefits like the GI Bill.
Starting Your Own Business
If you’d rather work for yourself, consider starting a business. Entrepreneurship might be right for you if you want to be your own boss, have control over your career, and spend your time working on projects that align with your skills and passions. Plus, Military.com explains that veteran-owned businesses have a track record of success and are often viewed positively by investors and consumers.
Consider forming an LLC before launching your business. An LLC will protect your personal assets from your company’s debts and legal issues, which can remove a lot of the risk associated with running your own business. Just be sure to research your state’s LLC rules first!
Managing Your Finances
Creating a financial management plan is important for paying off debt, saving for emergencies, and meeting your future financial goals. If possible, get started on your financial plan while you’re still serving in the military. When you become a veteran, you’ll need to adjust your financial plan to account for changes in your income and expenses. It’s also a good idea to set aside a transition fund to cover a few months of basic expenses while you look for a job or get your business up and running.
Building credit as a veteran is important for a number of reasons. Having a good credit score can make it easier to secure loans and mortgages, as well as qualify for better interest rates. This can be especially important for veterans who are looking to purchase a home or start a small business. Additionally, good credit can also make it easier to rent an apartment or secure a job, as many landlords and employers now check credit scores as part of the application process. Take steps to maintain a good credit score, such as paying bills on time, keeping balances low on credit cards, and monitoring your credit reports for errors.
Saving for a Home
If one of your financial goals is to buy a home one day, start saving now. Track your progress toward your saving goal so you can determine whether or not you’re on the right track. For example, you could set a goal to save a certain amount of money each month or to pay off a certain amount of debt. Keep in mind that you may be eligible for benefits and programs through the Veterans Affairs (VA) that can help with the costs of buying a home.
Purchasing a Home Warranty
After purchasing a home, a home warranty can help you save money by providing coverage for unexpected repairs or replacements of major home systems and appliances. It can also help you avoid the high costs associated with emergency repairs and hiring contractors on your own. A home warranty can cover repairs to kitchen and laundry appliances, plumbing, heating and air conditioning systems, and more—click here for more info.
The transition from military to civilian life can be a challenging process, especially when it comes to finances. However, with the right strategies and resources, young veterans can successfully navigate this new chapter and set themselves up for financial success. Starting your own business, continuing your education, managing your finances, building credit, securing a home, and investing in a home warranty will help you build a stable and prosperous future!
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