We all know that college costs a pretty penny, no matter what degree a student seeks.  After college is finished, many students are left feeling overwhelmed with their massive loan debts and credit card balances.

Though MBA graduates are likely to have a more realistic view of their finances, some are still left in the dark when real life ensues.  It is crucial to keep a level head and not allow debt to linger longer than necessary.  Take a quick look at a few personal finance tips to help recent graduates manage their personal finances.

Make a budget and use it

One of the most critical financial times for a person is right after college. Graduation means it is time to begin living and working a career.  It is time to support a household.  It is time to mature in the realm of personal finance.

Write up a personal budget and stick to it.  The second part of that sentence is most important.  A budget does no good if it is not utilized. Budgeting will take some of the stress out of finance management.

Get a hold on debt

College is expensive, and few people escape the establishment free of debt. Many students use credit cards like cash and rack up extreme balances before they even understand what they are doing to themselves. Graduation means it is time for financial cleanup.

There are tons of options for those seeking financial freedom from debt. Debt consolidation services offer a chance for graduates to obtain a small personal loan to pay off miscellaneous debts, thus effectively cramming them all down into one easy payment per month.

Never ignore student loans

Federal student loans are very serious.  Unfortunately, too many students do not fully understand the parameters of their student loans.  It pays (literally) to read and comprehend the fine print of a loan contract.

It is also important to understand the difference between a secured and an unsecured loan.  Interest rates and other fees are vital to the final total of the debt, so research them thoroughly before accepting a loan offer.

Find ways to live frugally

For a few years after graduation, it is wise to live a frugal life.  Every financial decision should be carefully considered.  If something is not entirely necessary for survival, then it might not be a good way to spend the funds.

There are plenty of ways to have fun without spending an outrageous amount of money.  Arts and crafts, board games, outdoor sports, and other activities are virtually free.  Use that expensive brain to get creative.

Avoid large purchases for a while

In addition to a frugal lifestyle, try to avoid investing in any large purchases directly out of college.  It is better to wait to buy that first home or brand new car.