EP052 The Debt Free Graduate with Murray Baker

Murray Baker is the author of The Debt-Free Graduate: How to Survive College or University Without Going Broke. Having sold over 200,000 copies, his book reached #3 on the Toronto Star Bestseller list. As a recognized influencer in the field, he has also been interviewed by a number of media outlets, including The Globe and Mail, The National Post, The Vancouver Sun, The Toronto Star, Canada AM, CBC Newsworld, Breakfast TV, Money Talks and many more. He has worked in financial literacy for over 20 years, writes for the Vancity Good Money Blog and manages Financial Empowerment for Family Service of Greater Vancouver. 

Today, Murray joins me to discuss how to take action and debt-preventative measures in small and manageable steps. He shares how pursuing your passion can lead to financial freedom and how to alleviate or prevent student debt. Dipping into his wealth of knowledge, we also get down to the nitty-gritty of student loans, part-time jobs, and financial planning. 


“If I can instill one thing… it’s the importance of saving early and the magic of compound earning.” – Murray Baker 


This Week on Young Money: 

  • Murray Baker’s current work in financial education and strategic saving initiatives. 
  • Why your financial goals are paramount. 
  • How consumerism influences people, their spending habits and their happiness. 
  • Building a manageable savings plan, no matter your income. 
  • Murray’s financial turning point.  
  • What is compound earnings and how it could positively impact your saving. 
  • Common money mistakes students and graduates make. 
  • How to use goal setting as a spending control measure. 


Top Tips for Students To Avoid Debt: 

  1. Start looking at how you are going to pay for post-secondary education early. 
  2. Look at non-repayable funding options first including 1) part-time/summer jobs 2) loyalty points (HigherEdPoints) and 3) scholarships, grants or bursaries. 
  3. Treat government loans as a top-up, not as your primary source of funding. 
  4. Research scholarships or bursaries early in grades 9 & 10 so you can learn what skills you may need to demonstrate and can tailor your activities in grades 10, 11 & 12 to acquire or showcase them. 
  5. Look into part-time jobs whilst you’re studying. 
  6. Hold off on credit cards as soon as you graduate. 
  7. Incorporate goal setting into your financial plan. 


Top Tips for Graduates Managing Their Student Debt: 

  1. Don’t feel hopeless – proactive strategy and goal setting can empower you to take control of your finances. 
  2. Start saving early – small amounts add up! No matter your salary, try to save small, manageable amounts. 
  3. Track your spending and know where your money is going. Consider budgeting, assessing your cash flow and building a contingency fund.  
  4. If you have student debt, avoid taking on other debt including credit cards and car loans for a few years after you graduate.  
  5. Have a complete understanding of how much debt you’re in and to whom. 
  6. Keep your student loan debt separate from your other debt- use caution when taking on consolidation loans. Remember that student debt interest is a tax deduction on your income tax return and if you are unemployed/underemployed you may qualify for payment relief on your student debt.  
  7. Ask for loyalty points for gifts so you can paydown student debt with other people’s money. (HigherEdPoints) 


Resources Mentioned: 



Rate, Share & Inspire Other Young Millionaires-in-the-Making  

Thanks for tuning into the Young Money Podcast – the advice show for young millionaires-in-the-making! If you enjoyed this week’s episode, head over to iTunes and leave us a rating and review. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes on social media!  

Subscribe to the Young Money Podcast on iTunes so you never miss an episode and reach out to us on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, our Linkedin Company Page, or by visiting our website.

Check out this episode!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *