Congratulations to the class of 2006. These are really challenging times, and they’re also exciting times. In her latest book, The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke (Riverhead Books), financial expert Suze Orman discusses the challenges that today’s college graduates face and offers five tips for members of the graduating class of 2006 as they enter the workforce:


Tip number 1: Know your FICO score. That three-digit number determines the interest rate that you will pay on credit cards, car loans, and home mortgages. You need a FICO score of 760 or above. If you can only get a 10 percent interest rate on a car loan because your FICO score is so low, then improve your score and refinance your auto loan.


Tip number 2: Benefit from your 401(k) plan. Now that you’ve got a job with a 401(k) plan, and your employer matches what you put into it, invest. No matter how much debt you have; you cannot afford to pass up free money.


Tip number 3: Never co-sign for a loan. Somebody, someday, is going to ask you to co-sign for a loan. Just say no! If you co-sign and that person can’t pay the bill, guess what? It is your bill, and it can ruin your future. So don’t do it!


Tip number 4: Get out of there. If you’re currently stuck in a job that doesn’t excite you, or you’re in a dead-end field, your job is to get out as soon as possible. Making a switch isn’t easy, you can’t afford to stay put if you’re unhappy. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to make a change.


Tip number 5: Give yourself credit. Running up a credit card debt to finance an indulgent lifestyle is flat-out stupid. But you can use your credit cards to make up legitimate shortfalls. A good use of your credit card is filling the gas tank so you can get to work. A bad use is renting a car for the weekend so you and your pals can head to the beach and run up a tab at a hotel that you really can’t afford.


As convinced as she is that her book contains all the information you need to start building a solid financial life, Suze Orman knows it would be even better if she delivered advice tailored to unique situations. That’s where her website comes in. She has created the YF&B section at It is loaded with tools and resources, including Orman’s Action Planner. The book and website are designed to work in tandem.

The Waynedale News Staff

Suze Orman

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