A 401(k) for a New College Grad? Yes! Please watch this if you want career mobility & financial independence in your 40s & beyond. In order to achieve this, you will need to invest heavily in your 20s & 30s.
If you put $20,000 a year into your 401K, it is tax deferred. Do you understand what that means? For example, if you did not put it into your 401K and wanted to take it home, the government would keep around $6,000 in taxes. That means your take home would only be $14,000. So, you made around 30% right away. Is there another investment out there that can get you a 30% return right away? No, not legally (in general).
I would at least put in what your employer will match dollar for dollar.
Let’s say your company will put $6K of its cash in your 401K (but only if you put $6K of your own). Some people might actually say no thank you and not put in 6K of their own money. However, you are saying no to an extra $6K that your employer wants to give you. Also, by putting 6K of your own in, the government will not take $1800 of it in taxes (if you take it home). So, with your 6K investment, you make an extra $7,800 right away on a 6K investment, that is over 100% at once. Also, that 12K total a year could be worth $2M by the time you are 40. Just the interest on 2M is 60-100K a year. So, I would at least put in what your employer will match dollar for dollar.
Should college grads negotiate a job offer (i.e., a higher starting salary)? Yes, but only if you know how to negotiate. I do have students that get offers in the $50K-$60K range & many successfully negotiate up to > $60-70K. That is a 10-30% bump before you even start! Many people have to work a few years to get that bump.
Tips/advice from this college professor (aka, educated idiot):
1. Read. People that read a lot make more $ (2.3 times more?!)
2. Learn the job saving technology.
3. Learn to interview well.
https://lnkd.in/ePzz3NG and https://lnkd.in/eZgTxWc
How to prep for virtual career fairs: https://lnkd.in/evKd-VzQ
Being job ready…
4. Learn to negotiate ($).
https://lnkd.in/gMJYNJkh and https://lnkd.in/guTUcvdu
5. Learn to network & use LinkedIn. https://lnkd.in/gPZPQtqR
6. Delay graduation for experience. https://lnkd.in/ewKu7b_X
7. Learn to problem solve – https://lnkd.in/eWaJ8q2
8. Double Major? https://lnkd.in/gAViGTVG
9. Get a grad degree? Earn $3M more than someone w/ only a bachelor’s degree. https://lnkd.in/g5FY5aty
10. Job rotations? https://lnkd.in/ervskG5
11. 10 college majors that earn the most money: https://lnkd.in/gEXGmFfU
12. Free tool for calculating degree ROI: https://lnkd.in/gEPwNSTJ