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Pattie Lovett-Reid

Chief Financial Commentator, CTV


High financial expectations and harsh employment realities have left recent post-secondary graduates feeling a little anxious and overwhelmed, according to a new poll by TD. Specifically, it found 47 per cent of recent grads feel overwhelmed about having to manage finances on their own.  

A competitive job market, lower-than-anticipated income and higher than-expected costs are just some of the realities facing post-secondary graduates.

Here were the top financial pressures revealed in the report:

1. The desire to become financially independent, 52%

2. Saving money so they can live on their own, 39%

3.Concern over re-payment of student debt, 23%

4. Feeling guilty spending money on things they wanted verses using the money for other financial commitments, 60%

Today's graduates are ambitious and motivated, but the realities of the job market can lead to feelings of financial pressure and guilt if they can't afford the things they want.

Here were some of the biggest challenges facing recent grads:  

1. Taking up to one year to find a job, 41%

2. Unexpected expenses such as transportation and commuting 33%

3. Buying meals, 25%

4. Buying an appropriate work wardrobe 23%

It is not surprising then that almost half of recent grads say the feel anxious or overwhelmed at having to manage their finances on their own. If you are included in that group, what can you do to have better outcome and attitude through the process? Here are some tips on how to save and manage your money:

  • Make a plan- short and long term goals
  • Set and stick to a budget
  • Prep your meals at home
  • Go for a coffee date instead of dinner
  • Hit the library
  • Fake it until you make it - buy gently used clothing
  • Work part-time at a gym or yoga studio in exchange for classes
  • Rent instead of buying a car
  • Keep living like a student
  • Stop trying to keep up with others...everyone has their own financial reality