What's Your Financial Advice For A 24-Year-Old?

Andrew has a pretty good job, and not a lot of debt. Now he’s ready to start preparing for the next phase of his financial life, and he wants to know what advice Consumerist readers have for him.

Hey Guys,

I just started working for a large company rather recently for a good lump of money. Yes I got a great job in this economy (possibly because I got turned down so much that a became pretty good at interviewing). I’ve done my best to manage my money but it isn’t easy.

I came out of college with little debt which I paid off quickly and had no credit cards until this job. I’m leasing a car which I now realize was a mistake since I don’t get to own it at all. I put in as much into my retirement as my company will match and always shop discount. I haggle my bills when they are unreasonable and can even afford my own apartment.

Even with all this and doing fairly well, I find it hard to have a savings account. Even harder, I’ve realized is building credit. I don’t need a credit card but know I’ll need one if I want to buy a house. I want to buy a house in the next 2-3 years because why pay rent when you can pay a mortgage instead? I’d also like to get out of my car lease but I’m stuck there haha

This is my first time living alone as I’ve lived with the parental units my whole life.

Any advice on what more I can do to save/build credit for the future? I’m 24 turning 25 soon and like I said before, unlike my peers I got a great job. Although we are a minority now, I’m pretty sure us young college grads that are still getting jobs could use some advice. Anything is appreciated!

-Andrew

So there you go: steady income, leased car, renting, maxing out his 401(k), no other real savings account to speak of. Can you give him some good advice, or am I going to have to forward this email on to Suze Orman?

(Photo: zzzack)