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Financial advice for a young military man.

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Old 04-06-2013, 12:53 PM   #1
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Financial advice for a young military man.

So fellas, as you may know I ship out for boot camp on May 1st. I'll complete my infantry mos to ensure that i'll have the GI bill to use on my future child in the future, the real objective is counter-intel but thats not the point of this thread.

The question i have is that what financial strategies do y'all have for me so i dont trip and make stupid mistakes that i could have avoided otherwise.

My financial situation:

-Truck is paid for (parents) I pay for mods
-Enrolled at Clemson University. Going to be commissioned as an officer upon graduation.
-Getting a scholarship to pay for all my tuition upon return from basic/AIT so i will essentially have no debt besides the amount i've already aquired(5-6K) in student loans.
-I have the LIFE scholarship which is (2.5K/semester) that i'd be getting back in cash every semester
-The scholarship will be giving me a monthly stipend (350$)
-When i go to drill one weekend a month that'll be about (220$ish)
-I plan on living off campus as its cheaper and looking at getting a single bedroom/studio type place for around 375-400$ month without utilites and stuff.


So, What sorta stuff do i need to start doing to set myself up for success while and after college?

Cam

UPDATE: so fellas usaa is a great place indeed and I got 2 very important things done today

1.got a credit card (300$ limit/and it has a rewards program as well)
2. Set up a cornerstone moderate mutual fund. (50$/month) which is very reasonable for what I'm getting for my money's work.

Just wanted to do an update.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:21 PM   #3
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Don't extend your self on credit. Do something to establish credit but don't fall into that I'll always have a paycheck or I'll charge it up this month and pay next month trap. It just adds up " I been there" Start out with a savings account have and amount auto transfer there each paycheck. 10% $50 bucks enuff to build a saving but not so much you'll notice its gone. Deployments and the such are stressfull enuff debit really makes it harder.
Also debit may have an effect at reinlistment time if you don't have a job lined up you mite stay in just to pay your bills. Don't trap yourself.
Also wear protection children all over the world are expensive.
Just keep life simple they issuse you almost everything you need to live. Its hard cause its the first time you'll prob have your real own money and want to buy lots of stuff. But just try to keep it as simpleas you can you don't really need that much. If you pay in cash its your's. Unlike credit where its eventually yours.
Also the payday scams are big around bases so stay away from that for sure.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:22 PM   #4
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Start right up by signing up with USAA for everything financial, insurance, investing, etc. As a young soon to be ensign, who really wasn't knowledgable of financial stuff, USAA has helped me with any financial question I may have as well as offering advice and great customer service....can't stress this enough. Im sure some more senior folks will chime in on here in a bit.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:33 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catcrazed View Post
Don't extend your self on credit. Do something to establish credit but don't fall into that I'll always have a paycheck or I'll charge it up this month and pay next month trap. It just adds up " I been there" Start out with a savings account have and amount auto transfer there each paycheck. 10% $50 bucks enuff to build a saving but not so much you'll notice its gone. Deployments and the such are stressfull enuff debit really makes it harder.
Also debit may have an effect at reinlistment time if you don't have a job lined up you mite stay in just to pay your bills. Don't trap yourself.
Also wear protection children all over the world are expensive.
Just keep life simple they issuse you almost everything you need to live. Its hard cause its the first time you'll prob have your real own money and want to buy lots of stuff. But just try to keep it as simpleas you can you don't really need that much. If you pay in cash its your's. Unlike credit where its eventually yours.
Also the payday scams are big around bases so stay away from that for sure.

-Im going to call USAA Monday and set up a small credit card if i can. I'll use it once a month to buy gas.(~50-60$ depending on the station)
that should establish credit and it'll be good for now until i get a bit more established.

-Live simply is prob the most important thing that i've taken away from that paragraph, i'll keep that in mind.

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Originally Posted by JNome View Post
Start right up by signing up with USAA for everything financial, insurance, investing, etc. As a young soon to be ensign, who really wasn't knowledgable of financial stuff, USAA has helped me with any financial question I may have as well as offering advice and great customer service....can't stress this enough. Im sure some more senior folks will chime in on here in a bit.
Thanks mate, i'll give them a ring Monday and get something set up.
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Old 04-06-2013, 03:34 PM   #6
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Just by thinking about your finances, you are already ahead of the game at your age. Knowledge is power...
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:21 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rupp1 View Post
Just by thinking about your finances, you are already ahead of the game at your age. Knowledge is power...
Thanks man, im just trying to get some help sorting out the best way to make sure i dont get over my head early and stuff.
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:24 PM   #8
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Yeah man, usaa is your best bet, and have a savings plan and stick to it. I kept breaking in mine all the time and I really don't have shit to show for it. And when you get the credit card for gas, only use it for gas. No exceptions (unless it's life or death)
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:26 PM   #9
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Can't see your location from my phone. But rent around my school is easily 600 bucks a month without utilities
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:33 PM   #10
ChamYota [OP] ChamYota is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teamamerica View Post
Yeah man, usaa is your best bet, and have a savings plan and stick to it. I kept breaking in mine all the time and I really don't have shit to show for it. And when you get the credit card for gas, only use it for gas. No exceptions (unless it's life or death)
This is my issue right here.

I don't know what i need to save for and how much and for how long it needs to be saved.

My first plan is to get about 1000$ saved and tucked away for a rainy,shitty,messy circumstance, when i get back from basic i'll have that amount tucked away in a mutual fund or something, so it's growing on it's own and if i need it, i'll be able to pull from it,

I've also been considering taking a percentage of my check (unknown yet) to contribute to my mutual/rainy fucking day fund.

I've gotta see what my average income is after the summer and what goes in and out before i get ahead of myself.
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:34 PM   #11
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Hey I shipped out on May 1st last year haha. But you seem to be doing the right thing already, just be smart with your money..and dont make any babies.
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:35 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Redfox1 View Post
Can't see your location from my phone. But rent around my school is easily 600 bucks a month without utilities
Im in South Carolina. the place im looking at is about 375$/month without internet,water,power. which is what im going to need, im prob looking at close to 500$/month in that respect...

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Originally Posted by Hagen View Post
USAA!

The new website is extremely helpful with tracking your money. Never spend more than what goes in.
Thats the plan.
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:37 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by screamineagle68w View Post
Hey I shipped out on May 1st last year haha. But you seem to be doing the right thing already, just be smart with your money..and dont make any babies.
This.
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:42 PM   #14
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dont buy dumb stuff while on pass ($50 of candy because you can, then throw up because of it like i did lol) during your training, idk how many people i saw buying family crest(ancestry) stuff or swords or even the way overpriced ACU bags that are in the PX. Just dont get tricked into anything either, you would think AAFES would look out for soldiers but they'll let any con artist set up a stand. You sound like you have most everything planned out already which is outstanding just stay focused and you'll be okay
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:43 PM   #16
Get off your horse and drink your milk.
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Shoot for whatever you can afford, mine was 600$ a month (I'm active duty)
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:44 PM   #17
Get off your horse and drink your milk.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TacoTT520 View Post
dont buy dumb stuff while on pass ($50 of candy because you can, then throw up because of it like i did lol) during your training, idk how many people i saw buying family crest(ancestry) stuff or swords or even the way overpriced ACU bags that are in the PX. Just dont get tricked into anything either, you would think AAFES would look out for soldiers but they'll let any con artist set up a stand. You sound like you have most everything planned out already which is outstanding just stay focused and you'll be okay
Yeah aafes is the biggest piece of shit, don't fall for that dumb shit, or the shirts from basic. It's all a rip off.
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:45 PM   #18
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You are on the right path by starting out debt free. Keep it that way. Do not fall for the mantra of debt being normal. Normal in America is broke. Take financial advice from rich people, not your broke neighbor or friends. They are that way for a reason.

The best advice I can offer is to open a Roth IRA NOW, max it out, and invest it in decent growth stock mutual funds. If you do this now, you will retire with millions. No joke, just the magic of compound interest.

Thanks for being willing to serve your country!
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Old 04-06-2013, 04:55 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCConstable View Post
You are on the right path by starting out debt free. Keep it that way. Do not fall for the mantra of debt being normal. Normal in America is broke. Take financial advice from rich people, not your broke neighbor or friends. They are that way for a reason.

The best advice I can offer is to open a Roth IRA NOW, max it out, and invest it in decent growth stock mutual funds. If you do this now, you will retire with millions. No joke, just the magic of compound interest.

Thanks for being willing to serve your country!
I've heard about this but apparently i'll have to do more research, this looks to be an interesting way to make money.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hagen View Post
At 18 I tried to put $100 away each month just to grow a savings account. The rest went to pay off my truck and motorcycle and to live life (your 18, gotta live it up while your young). Once I got promoted I put the extra money twards the savings like 300 ish total. Now I am 23, I try to make sure 300-500 goes into the savings. I keep 10k in savings as an "o shit" fund. I will now start working towards 15k then 20k then 25k. That's how I keep myself saving.

I refuse to get into debt. It's not worth it. If you can't pay for it in cash do not buy it (unless its a house and you have a steady way to pay it). If you take a loan (i do it all the time to build credit) then make sure you have enough to pay it off with interest included.
I see, i'll have to set similar goals, although not on the scale that you're on at the moment lol.

Quote:
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Yeah aafes is the biggest piece of shit, don't fall for that dumb shit, or the shirts from basic. It's all a rip off.
I aint buying shit they dont tell us to buy. lol
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Old 04-06-2013, 05:11 PM   #20
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