3 Financial Literacy Tips for Parents of College Students

Is your child heading to college next year? If so, it’s never too early to talk about financial literacy! 

That’s why Tina Dennis, Persons Banking Company’s Retail Banking Officer, is sharing 3 tips for parents who want to help their college students spend and save wisely. 

Keep reading to learn more!

3 Financial Literacy Tips for Parents of College Students

#1 Talk to Your Child About Money

Tina said it’s important to have several conversations about money and finances before your child heads to college. 

Here are a few suggestions on what to cover:

  • How a credit card works and how to avoid debt
  • Wants vs. Needs
  • The importance of saving money 
  • How to make a budget

Tina also suggests college students talk with their family’s personal banker to help answer questions they might have. 

Related: How to Talk to Your Kids About Money

#2:  Create a Budget

A budget can help set your student up for financial success.

When making a budget, have your student first consider where their money will come from. 

Will you give them a monthly allowance? Will they have a part time job or work-study? Do they have existing savings? 

After they’ve determined where their cash will come from and how much they’ll have each month, sit down with your student and help them brainstorm what they’ll likely spend their money on while away at school. 

Then set realistic limits on each line item. 

Here are just a few expenses to consider:

  • Books
  • Activities
  • Food (outside of a meal plan)
  • Clothing
  • Entertainment
  • Gas/travel

#3 Be Aware of Common Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

Tina said there are a few common pitfalls students should be aware of before their first day of classes. 

First, she said to avoid borrowing more in student loans than necessary. Be sure to research all the scholarships and financial aid available to you.

Secondly, many students avoid saving money in college. Tina said it’s important to develop good savings habits early. 

Lastly, help your student understand the significance of  credit and how easy it can be to misuse one. 

“The biggest piece of advice that I can offer students when it comes to finances is to develop self-discipline,” Tina said. “Having self-discipline while in college will allow financial freedom in the future.”

How Persons Banking Can Help

Persons Banking Company offers a variety of products and services perfect for college students, including:

Financial Tips for College Students: Wrapping Up

Attending college is an exciting time for your child! Make sure they are financially literate by …

  1. Having regular conversations about finances and savings
  2. Helping them create a budget
  3. Making them aware of common financial pitfalls 

And if you or your child have questions, be sure to schedule an appointment with one of our bankers. We’re happy to answer your questions!

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