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Eight Tips for the Newly Hired

You've given your notice, celebrated with your family and friends, and even bought a new suit. Don't forget to do these things as well:

  1. Review your financial goals. If your new position comes with a bigger paycheck, plan how you will allocate — rather than just spend — that new money. For example, if you can't participate in a 401(k) for one year, consider setting up a systematic deposit of 15% of your salary into a money-market account, or another investment vehicle. The sooner you start saving, the quicker your money will accumulate due to compounded growth.
  2. Understand your new job's benefits program. Take advantage of every perk, such as employer matching contributions.
  3. Sign up for direct deposit. Save yourself the hassle of depositing your own checks. Besides, direct deposit paychecks are often deposited in your bank account a few days before printed checks are distributed.
  4. Track your expenses for a few months. You'll be surprised how a new job can affect your spending. Pay special attention to transportation or commuting costs, lunches, new work clothes, dry cleaning bills, child care expenses, and so on. You may find that your raise wasn't as big as you thought.
  5. Don't let your medical insurance fall through the cracks. Be sure to continue your coverage from your previous employer (through COBRA, if possible, or another carrier) until your new plan is active. As long as you have continuous coverage, your new employer can't refuse you coverage based on pre-existing conditions.
  6. Decide what to do with your vested retirement dollars. If you choose to rollover your money, you could owe income taxes as well as a 10% penalty, if you are under the age of 59 1/2. Consult with your accountant or benefits manager at your new job before you make any decisions.
  7. Review your life insurance coverage. One of the key uses of life insurance is to replace lost income if a household's breadwinner dies. The actual amount you should own varies depending on your situation and needs. Use our Survivor Needs Calculator to get a rough idea of how much life insurance you should own.
  8. E-mail or write your friends and peers, describing your new job and giving them your new contact information, advises www.collegegrad.com. This way, you stay connected and networked. Also, make sure to thank any people who helped you land your new position.

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Eight Tips for the Newly Hired

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