Going to college is a major life event. You should feel like you can enjoy the ride.
That’s not always the case—especially when your first tuition bill is just around the corner. But we’ve got good news.
While saving and paying for school can be a significant challenge, you can use some tips and tricks to enjoy your college years and save money at the same time.
Partnering with a community bank and maintaining healthy bank accounts are among the best ways to level up your financial situation.
What is the Importance of Having a Bank Account in College?
This goes for college students—and everyone else.
Why is that? How would a bank account help you in life?
- Your bank accounts give you a secure place to keep your cash, so you don’t have to keep your money in your dorm or on your person.
- Most modern banks also offer convenient mobile banking options, so you can initiate e-payments, take direct deposits, and check your balances on the go.
- Depending on the type of account you open, your banking habits can help you build credit or even earn interest.
Establishing a relationship with your community bank can help them get to know you. This also gets you access to an invaluable resource: the team of friendly financial experts behind the desk at your bank.
These people do far more than just help you deposit checks; they’re ready to provide tailored financial services and solutions to meet the unique needs of students.
For example, if you schedule a meeting with your local bank to discuss your financial situation as a college student, these banking advisors can:
- Help you establish great financial habits early on.
- Give you tips to help build your credit.
- Clue you in to unexpected sources of financial aid.
- Provide information about the different savings options available to college students.
Just having a contact to turn to for financial advice can reduce a lot of money-related stress.
Here are a few more tips to streamline your finances as a college student.
Quick Tips for Managing Finances as a College Student
Sometimes, managing your money requires making the right decisions at a high level. But maybe you don’t quite feel like answering the big questions—such as “What is the importance of money in our daily lives?” and “Why is it important to save money in your life in the first place?”.
Here are six things college students can tackle in just a few minutes to level up their finances and avoid common money mistakes.
- Make a budget and stick to it: Set a recurring calendar event to reexamine your budget at the start of every semester to ensure it’s working for you.
- Log in to your bank accounts regularly: It’s a good idea to see your balances and review your bank statements. This will help you avoid overdraft fees and stick to your budget. It can also alert you to any unauthorized transactions that could be fraudulent.
- Save money: If you can set aside even a few dollars a month for long-term savings, your future self will thank you. Interest takes a while to work its magic. Starting early and reaping the benefits of four more years of interest can pay off.
- Know how to save: Simple piggy banks are a thing of the past. Today’s savings accounts and education savings options—which can help you save money for school tax-free—make navigating finances in college a lot easier.
- Apply for more scholarships and grants: Your window for finding aid doesn’t close before your freshman year! You may be surprised at what you’re eligible for even as you go through college. Keep an eye out for new scholarships that fit with your interests or academic track and apply for them regularly. Your school’s financial aid office is a great resource for learning about these opportunities.
- Be careful about who you share finances with: Your financial information should be something you keep to yourself, for the most part. As convenient as it may be, avoid opening banking accounts with your boyfriend or girlfriend. It’s better to have something you have complete control over in your name. In that same vein, don’t give a credit card to your partner. That’s not a trust exercise; it’s simply an unsafe idea.
These tips can help you get started with stellar finances as a student—but going the extra mile to ensure you’re managing your money right isn’t something you should do alone. Your local community bank has resources for you, and they’re happy to help you figure out complicated college costs and student-specific savings strategies.
Excited for College? This Community Bank is Excited to Help You Get Started with Great Finances
If you’re ready to make sure that your financial situation as a student is set up as strategically as possible, BNC National Bank is ready to help. Call us anytime, or reach out to us through this quick contact form.
In the meantime, if you want to learn more about what we offer, check out our personal banking service offerings.
BNC National Bank, Member FDIC, Equal Housing Lender