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Dr. Don Taylor, CFA, Bankrate.com advice columnist Getting started on a savings plan

Dear Dr. Don,
I'm a 22-year-old recent college graduate looking for a teaching job, and am about to move out of my parents' house and begin to rent, from them, with my boyfriend. I have a few bank accounts open in my name. One account I use for savings with a $3,000 balance. A second account I use for everyday life, and a third, which my boyfriend and I both contribute to, is for housing expenses.

I'm just wondering if I'm doing the right thing. I've been thinking about transferring my savings to a higher-interest account at an online bank. I just want to make the best financial decisions I can and I've become overwhelmed by all the information out there. Can you please point me in a direction?

Thanks! Have a great day!
--MaKenzie Moves

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Dear MaKenzie,
You're doing a lot of things right when it comes to your finances. Having a household account with your boyfriend, while keeping your own accounts for spending and saving, makes perfect sense.

You can shop the best yields in your market or nationwide on Bankrate. That goes for interest checking as well as money market accounts, MMAs, or money market mutual funds, or MMFs.

When you land that first teaching job, try to make retirement savings a priority. It's not easy to do in your 20s when there are so many other financial goals you want to work toward, but a bit of financial discipline in your 20s can make it a whole lot easier for you to reach all of your financial goals. Check out the Bankrate column, "How the young can get rich" to get a better sense as to why saving for retirement now is so important.

There's a lot more to investing than bank accounts and money market mutual funds. Start expanding your investment horizons by considering investing in stocks, bonds or mutual funds. Before taking the plunge, learn more about mutual funds by attending Morningstar's free Investing Classroom.

Bankrate.com's corrections policy-- Posted: April 20, 2007
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