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College Students - Don't Epic Fail With Your Finances

Are you ready to be the captain of your financial future?
We've put together some handy college tips to help you succeed with your finances. Forward them to a friend or share them with your family.

Don't Epic Fail With Credit Cards

Don’t be bamboozled by credit card companies charging high interest rates. Free t-shirts and swag don’t last very long, but credit card debt and low credit scores can haunt you for years. Follow these simple tips to better manage your credit card debt and maintain a good credit score.

  • Don’t open more than one credit card
  • Shop around and find a credit card with a low interest rate, few fees or no fees
  • Keep the credit limit under $500
  • Make payments on time
  • Make small purchases and pay them off
  • Pay down credit cards but don’t close them
  • Avoid opening high interest credit cards with department stores
  • Don’t apply for everything – excessive credit inquiries can damage your score
  • Check your credit for free each year with a free credit report (annualcreditreport.com)

Did you know?
A good credit score is needed for rental apps, home and auto loans and sometimes employment. For more information about what your credit score means and how to begin building better credit click here.

Budget Like A Kung Fu Master 

Become a budget kung fu master. Practice these time-honored traditions, young grasshopper, and the enlightenment of savings will be yours.

  • Create a budget worksheet. Sit down and take a few minutes to fill out a budget sheet. It’s a great way to get a realistic handle on just how much money you are spending and how money much you need each month. Whether using an app, a spreadsheet or just a pen and paper, a budget sheet will help you get your financial act together. Download our free excel budget worksheet.
  • Buy used, not new. Save money on some of the most expensive purchases you will make during college like smart phones, appliances and electronics. Good quality, pre-owned or refurbished versions of these items can be found online at lower prices. A little research and patience could save you big bucks.
  • Cook for yourself. Homemade meals are usually healthier and can save you as much as $30 - $50 a week. However, a little splurge now and then is fine.
  • Set up automatic bill pay. With tests and classes, who has time to remember when bills are due? Avoid costly late fees and build better relationships with utility companies by setting up automatic payments.
  • Find free or cheap entertainment. Look for free movies, exhibits and concerts at local museums or college campuses. Need a budget friendly date-night? Opt for a wallet-friendly picnic or a $1 DVD rental. Avoid expensive pub bills and host potluck friendly cookouts and game nights with friends.

Just be smart with your money and make an effort to make good decisions. You'll be glad that you did. If you have questions or would like to speak to a credit union representative please call 800.522.3535 today.