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Your twenties may seem like a time characterized by career struggles, low paychecks, and generally trying to find your way in the world. However, it’s also a time in your life when you have tremendous opportunity to save. If you haven’t yet bought a home or started a family, chances are you can stow away a little bit more money each month.

1 Pick up extra work.

Working two jobs when you have a family can drive you insane. Working two jobs when you’re young and single is much more manageable. If you can make ends meet on one paycheck, that’s great. Find a second job so you can bank the second paycheck.

You don’t necessarily need to find a job at a brick-and-mortar location. The internet also offers plenty of opportunities to earn extra cash through contract work, affiliate marketing, and other part-time work-at-home opportunities.

2 Pass on the bar– drink at home.

Drinking at the bar is easily three times as expensive as drinking at home. You don’t need to become a social pariah, but bars are huge money-sucks. Drink with friends in your apartment, or find cheaper ways to socialize.

3 Take advantage of investment vehicles now.

How early you start saving has a huge impact on your total savings, largely thanks to the magic of compound interest. Take advantage of any 401(k) plan offered by your employer, and max out the offered match amount. You may also consider opening an IRA. This is a good option for people who don’t have benefits from work, or self-employed individuals.

4 Pay down debt as fast as possible.

Today’s twenty-somethings are burdened by debt. If you have a load of debt to your name, pay it down as fast as possible. This will help you in two ways. First, it will shrink the overall interest owed. Second, it will free up space in your budget faster, which translates to more money you can save in an interest-earning investment vehicle. The key to smart saving is to start younger so you can get the most out of compound interest.

5 Bite the bullet– live with roommates.

Yes, studio apartments are awesome, and yes, they’re often fairly expensive. If you can manage it, share your space with a roommate. You might even enjoy having the company. A few years spent with roommates will pave the way for a down payment on a property of your own.

Never Lose Sight of Opportunities to Save

Your twenties can be a struggle financially. Many young people have a difficult time saving. However, staying focused on your savings goals and managing money smartly, even when your cash flow is more of a trickle, will pay off in the long term.