What New College Students Need to Know about Managing Money

Going to college means a lot of firsts, and for many students, one of the most important ones is learning to manage their own money for the first time. Money management is an essential skill that gets easier with practice, so get serious about your money starting from your first day on campus. Your credit union is a great resource for money management advice. Here are some other tips that can benefit college students.

Start with a Budget

Budgets might not sound like much fun, but in reality, they actually make it possible for you to always have money for the things you want. With your parents’ help or the help of your credit union, sit down and determine a realistic budget for college. Know exactly how much money you need to cover your expenses and how much you will have left over for discretionary spending. Sticking to your budget allows you to go out and have fun on a regular basis instead of blowing all your money in one night or on one shopping trip.

Make Savings a Habit

The sooner you get used to saving money, the easier it is to do it. Make sure there is a spot in your budget for saving, even if you only put a few dollars aside every week. Saving money is an investment in your short and long-term future, so you have money for everything from Spring Break to your first post-college apartment.

Monitor Your Spending

Thanks to online banking, you never have to sit down and balance a checkbook to know how much money you have. Take advantage of these tools to monitor your checking account, so you don’t run the risk of overspending. Knowing how much money you have lets you make smart decisions about how to prioritize it.

At GCS Credit Union, our Student Success Account Package gives you the tools you need to learn to manage your money, including a checking account and savings account . Bring your student ID to one of our credit union locations in O’Fallon to sign up, or contact us at (618) 797-7993 to find out more about membership.

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