Although 24-year-olds have time to bounce back if, for whatever reason, they aren’t saving and investing yet, it’s still important to begin developing smart habits early. Kimmie Greene, money expert at Intuit and spokeswoman for Mint.com, says the most important thing to do money-wise in your 20s is to develop a willingness to have tough conversations with yourself and make sacrifices in the name of financial health.

“The choices don’t get easier as your salary increases,” she tells CNBC Make It. “It’s part of the mindset when you’re young. It’s ‘Oh, when I get that next job and I get a $10,000 bump in my salary, then I’ll start doing these things,’ but that’s really not the reality.”

Even those who don’t have access to a 401(k), or, even better, one with an employer match, can and should still begin putting money away for retirement. Both Roth IRAs and traditional IRAs offer tax benefits and should be considered as part of a diversified savings plan. You can read up on the differences between various retirement accounts here.

Read up on more basics of investing as well. And don’t be afraid to talk to a trusted financial advisor if you get overwhelmed.

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