Every young person can learn about finance

Hard work, unfortunately, isn’t enough to make it in the world. As has been noted, being technically proficient isn’t enough to make it these days. To succeed in your career is one thing, but ultimately we are also concerned about our future. Young people must start thinking about the decades to come, not merely the years. This requires investing now.

What to avoid

A big problem for many young people is either they don’t do anything or they do the wrong thing, when it comes to finance. A recent survey pointed out a third of a sample of millennials had been the victim of financial abuse. Furthermore, many of these young people said banks and financial institutions don’t do enough to help victims.

Most of us think we won’t be victims of financial crime. But that is obviously a bad perspective. Merely believing doesn’t make it true.

Young people must learn deals which seem too good to be true probably are. Always be careful with your details relating to your accounts. If you have to make transactions, rather do so in the bank itself with the bank’s staff. Don’t do transactions over the phone. Anyone can claim to be from your bank and easily acquire your details.

But this only focuses on what you already have, not how to grow your finances.

Focusing on finance

Finance is a notoriously difficult world to enter. However, this doesn’t mean we are not affected by it. A good way to start is to consider what you want to invest in. This can be daunting for people who’ve never thought of this before, but it must be considered.

For example, government retail bonds earn a fixed interest for the term of the investment. In South Africa, it offers guaranteed returns. Further, these can be bought for as little as R1 000, carrying no commission, agency or service fees. It is ideal for a first time investor, given the guarantees being made.

But just because you know about particular investments doesn’t mean they should be your first option. Speak to a professional at your bank or someone who has your interests at heart. Even then, don’t immediately opt for it. Take your time, gather more information and compare deals offered by other institutions.

What matters is you need to start as soon as you can. When you begin earning a fixed salary, it might be time to look at investments. Though it can be daunting, there are people who can help you — just don’t throw everything into the first good deal you find. That’s when you make bad decisions.