Personal Finance Tips for College Students

College presents many great opportunities for young people, but along with your privileges, there are also responsibilities. Preparing your financial future starts in your college years as well. This is the time when you can establish your personal credit history and maintain an impressive credit record for your future.

Why Build Good Credit History?

Keep in mind that when you graduate from college, you will be facing employers, landlords, insurers and creditors – all of them interested in what your credit history reveals about you. Are you credit worthy or a credit risk?

How well did you manage your accounts while you were in college? Are you the type of borrower who is consistently prompt in submitting your payments? Or are you the type of borrower who usually falls behind on your payment due dates? These questions will be answered by your credit score and the details contained in your credit report.

Needless to say, being financially prepared will largely depend on how good your credit rating is. By the time you graduate, you need to make sure that you have built and maintained an impressive credit rating.

Finance Tips for College Students

Apart from protecting your personal credit, you also need to make sure that you will not be graduating with large debts in your account. Unfortunately, some students found themselves stuck in a very bad debt situation because of uncontrolled credit card spending.

While you can use your student credit card to build good credit, don’t forget that mismanagement may also lead you to bad debt. Therefore, before using your student credit card to pay a bill or make a purchase, you may ask yourself the following questions:

“Should I use my credit card for this or can I pay it with cash?”
“Do I really NEED this or do I just WANT it?”
“How do I plan to pay back my credit card balance?”
“Will I be able to pay this on my own or will I need to ask help from my parents?”
“Can I submit my payment on time?”

If you have acquired student loans to support your education, it’s a smart thing to begin paying off the interest rates of your loans while you’re still college. If you have extra money to contribute to your student loan, then you don’t need to wait until your graduation before posting payments. Hence, by the time you’re ready to apply for a job, you can give yourself a fresh start and not be overwhelmed with a very large student loan debt to pay for.

About the Author

Samantha Wilson is a consultant for credit cards for students. For years she has written student credit card articles that would help build student credit.
Copyright 2010

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