Smart Money Tips For College Students

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You’ve seen them in the student center, you’ve come across them on the way to the library, your dorm, even on campus billboards. What am I talking about? Credit card applications!

money tipsYes, credit card issuers would love to have your business even now when you probably have the least amount of money to your name. If you aren’t careful, credit card debt can mushroom rapidly, adding one more burden you’ll have to shoulder once you graduate college. Trust me, you’ll have your hands full if you took on a lot of student loan debt!

Oddly, learning how to handle money isn’t something typically taught in school. You could graduate with a B.S. in Business Administration and be terrible with managing your money. The following are some tips to help you keep your financial picture clear while enrolled in college:

Get Your Free Checking — Plenty of banks offer free checking, especially to college students. Some require that a small balance ($100, for example) be maintained to avoid fees, but many banks will waive these charges. After all, they want your business for many years to come!

Control Your Credit Cards — Do not use your credit card to make everyday purchases. If you do, then you may quickly find yourself overwhelmed by debt, unable to keep up with payments. Use credit cards for emergencies only. Avoid all cards that charge an annual fee.

Make Payments On Time — Even while in school, your credit record is taking shape. By the time you graduate college, you’ll have built up a rather robust credit history. Pay all of your bills on time and your credit rating will be good.

Set Aside Some Cash — When you don’t have a whole lot of money coming in, setting aside some cash for the future doesn’t seem to make sense. However, even a small stash of cash can be useful to cover expenses and emergencies, a much better idea than going into debt.

The financial habits you create, especially good ones, can serve you well for many years to come. Develop a disciplined financial strategy now and you’ll save yourself from many headaches later on.

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