As your student settles in to college life, ensure money management is on their personal syllabus. Busey is partnering with the American Bankers Association (ABA) to help school your college freshman with these 10 money-saving tips:
1) Create a budget. You’re an adult now and are responsible for managing your own finances. The first step is to create a realistic budget or plan and stick to it.
2) Watch spending. Keep receipts and track spending in a notebook or on a budgeting tool like FinanceWorks. Pace spending and increase saving by cutting unnecessary expenses, like eating out or shopping, so your money can last throughout the semester.
3) Use credit wisely. Understand the responsibilities and benefits of credit. Use it, but don’t abuse it. How you handle your credit in college could impact you well after graduation. Shop around for a card that best suits your needs.
4) Take advantage of your bank’s resources. Most banks offer online, mobile and text banking tools to manage your account anytime, anywhere. Use these tools to check balances, pay bills, deposit checks and monitor transaction history.
5) Look out for money. There's a lot of money available for students—you just have to look for it. Apply for scholarships and look for student discounts or other deals.
6) Buy used. Consider buying used books or ordering them online. Buying books can become expensive and often used books are in just as good of shape as new ones. If you ask, professors may place their textbooks on reserve to use at your university’s library.
7) Entertain on a budget. Limit your “hanging out” fund. There are lots of fun activities to keep you busy in college and many are free for students. Get the most from your student ID. Use your meal plan or sample new recipes instead of eating out.
8) Use only your bank’s ATMs. Avoid fees by using ATMs owned by or affiliated with your bank. If you must use an ATM that is not affiliated with your bank, take out larger withdrawals to avoid having to go back multiple times.
9) Expect the unexpected. Things happen, and it's important you are financially prepared when your car or computer breaks down or you have to buy an unexpected bus ticket home. You should start putting some money away immediately, no matter how small the amount.
10) Ask. This is a learning experience, so if you need help, ask. Your parents or your bank are a good place to start, and remember—the sooner the better.
“It’s important for college students to take control of their financial future by saving wherever and whenever they can,” says Frank Keating, ABA President and CEO. “They should treat personal finance like a second major and avoid unnecessary expenses now to reduce financial burden when they graduate.”
Help your student form a strong foundation for money management. Visit the Resource Center on busey.com for tools or speak with an expert today by calling 1.800.67 l Busey.