One of the biggest responsibilities you will have as a college student is learning how to manage your personal finances successfully. Here are some useful tips:
- Make a budget for yourself listing all of your expenses including food, books, transportation, telephone, clothing, toiletries, entertainment, etc.
- Stick to your budget and buy only what you need, while treating yourself on occasion.
- Buy used books whenever possible.
- Open a checking account at a local bank. Many merchants will not accept out of state checks.
- Look for an larger regional or national bank, especially if you are going to school in a different city or state.
- As soon as you write a check, record the check number and the amount in your checkbook register.
- Never write a check before your deposit has reached the bank and cleared.
- Keep your deposit slips and canceled checks.
- Balance your checkbook at least once per month.
- Be aware that credit card companies will deluge you with attractive offers because as a college student with income generating potential, you are a good credit risk. These companies also assume that your parents will cover your credit card payments if you cant.
- Find a credit card with low interest and no annual fee.
- Dont charge more on your credit cards than you can afford to pay off each month.
- Pay more than your minimum payment each month if you use your credit card regularly.
- Stay out of stores and away from ATM machines. What you dont see can't tempt you. Leave your credit cards at home when you do go out.
If you want to talk about money management or any other issues, call or stop by the Counseling Center for an appointment.