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My Best Piece of Financial Advice

A teacher friend of mine recently asked me a question. She does something in her classes she calls Financial Fridays, where she talks to her high school students about a useful financial topic each week. (I wish more teachers would do this!). She wanted to know the number-one piece of advice I would give to a person just out of high school to set them up for future financial success. 

My answer? Automate the wealth-building process as early as possible, and become addicted to saving and investing. At this point in life, the mechanics don’t matter. What’s important for young people starting out is to build the right habits now: spend less than they earn, put money away, and take advantage of time. A high school student with a part-time job can start putting $10 per week into a Fidelity account. The amount truly doesn’t matter – it’s the habit. 

This applies to every person coming out of high school or college. Once those habits are in place, we can build a strategy regarding where and how to invest as income and assets increase. In my experience working with clients, those who build these wise behaviors early on are far more likely to stick to a financial plan long-term. 

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