Spring Semester 2021
1. The final draft of the written assignment is due May 3rd 2021 by
2. The 12 budget/personal finance examples on the handout are just
suggestions of things to cover – you can and should add others.
3. The length of the paper is up to you. I want you to show your work,
sources, etc- and display it in a way an ordinary person can understand.
4. Basically I am asking you to map out your financial life for the first year
after college. Be as broad in your coverage as you want.
5. Do the Federal, State and local (if applicable) taxes by hand. I want to
see your work. Do not use tax software! For the standard deduction use
6. Go over the chapters in “Personal Finance” on budgeting and taxes for
ideas of areas to cover and ways to present your material visually.
7. The final draft of the paper is due May 3rd 2021, but you may submit
whenever you are ready to.
Spring Semester 2021
BSAD – 009
Personal Finance & Investing
It is May 2021 and you are about to graduate from the University of Vermont. You are 21
years old and excited about the next phase in your life.
You are planning to move to _____________ (you decide) to take a job with a company in your
area of interest. You are thrilled that you performed well in the interview process and excited
about the new job which promises excellent training to help move you to the next level.
You will be paid a gross salary of $50,000 and intend to move over the Summer and start work
in the Fall. The question now is how to build a budget based on your income and expenses in
your new city.
1) Using IRS tax data presented in class, calculate your Federal income taxes, State income taxes (if
applicable), local income taxes (if applicable), and FICA tax. Determine what your take home
income will be. This includes showing adjusted gross income and taxable income. Do not use
tax software, I want you to show details of your work.
2) Research housing costs in your new city (show sources). Determine whether you can afford to
live alone or you will need to have one, two or more roommates. And factor in any security
deposit in your rental. If your new job is in your hometown, will you live at home? Even if you
plan to live at home, research what rents would be in your area and complete #3.
3) Determine the total cost of housing. This might include, heat, electricity, water and trash removal
(these might be included in your rent, if so detail this) and whether you will have other expenses
such as cable/internet or Netflix. And importantly, what will your cellphone plan cost and/or
your data plan.
4) If you decide to live in the suburbs, or even downtown, you may have commuting costs. These
include public transportation or fuel for a vehicle. And parking costs. What are these costs
estimated to be?
5) If you have a car there will be costs to insure it. Research what the minimum levels of coverage
are for liability and uninsured motorist in your State and what the cost of insurance will be.
Detail this. You can assume you have a good driving record. You should also include the cost of
fuel and maintenance of the car, as well as the annual cost of auto registration.
6) Food and entertainment. Research what the average cost of food in your area is and estimate
your at-home food costs as well as your meals at work. In addition to rent and food, you
obviously want funds for after work entertainment/travel/vacation. Budget for this.
7) The company you are going to work for has a retirement plan (401k) and you qualify for it
immediately. The company matches your contribution up to 4% of your salary. You can
contribute up to a maximum of 15% of your gross salary. In your budget, factor in what
percentage of salary you intend to save via the 401k. Remember, whatever you contribute up to
4% of your salary is matched by the company.
8) Unfortunately your company does not offer health benefits. You might be covered under your
parent’s plan up to age 26 but for this project, determine what health insurance (and dental
insurance) will cost if you go to your State Health Exchange. You will have to choose what kind
of plan you want, what it covers and how much the deductible, co-pay and co-insurance will be.
Be specific here.
9) You want to leave money to your younger brother in the event you were to die. He is not in a
position to earn as much as you over his working career. Price a term life insurance policy for
$100,000 for a period of 20 years. Fit this into your budget.
10)Clothing costs and miscellaneous.
11)Optional: Estimate the monthly student loan payment you will be responsible for. If you are a
freshman this is obviously going to be a loose estimate. If you are a senior you will know with
12)You may find that after factoring in all your expenses you do not have enough income to cover
everything. What is the shortfall and how will you cover this? What expenses will you reduce or
You will get paid every two weeks. Your budget should be shown both on a monthly and an
annual basis. Your budget may include more than the 12 items listed here, these are just for
direction. You are free to present the information in whatever form you choose but the emphasis
should be on clarity. Someone with no knowledge of your situation should be able to pick up
your paper and understand your assumptions, details and organization. 学霸联盟