Some parents dread it, and some parents dream about it: the day your teenager flies the coop…at least for a few collegiate years. As your family prepares for the big transition, here’s a few practical thoughts to keep in mind.
Get a debit card sooner than later. Make sure your teen has their checking account set up with their debit card. Try to take care of this early. If you give your teen a few months to learn to use it under your wing, he is much more likely to be successful using it while on his own. I know I am biased, but the CVCU Free Basic Checking account is a perfect option for students. Most college campuses have fairs where banks will offer “free student checking”, but what happens once he is no longer a student? Fees. Lots of them. Choose a checking account that is free all the time, no matter the student status.
Locate the free ATMs now. CVCU debit card users have surcharge-free access to thousands of ATMs in the SUM ATM Network all over the country. Use the ATM Locator options to find the ones in your teen’s college town before she gets there. She can even download the SUM Smartphone App for free.
Check scholarship deadlines. Many scholarship deadlines have not passed yet, but they are getting close. Make sure to apply for any that she may qualify for.
Learn More. A lot of parents don’t think about directly teaching their kids about money. Maybe it’s because they don’t feel qualified. Maybe it’s because they think the schools should be doing it. Regardless, don’t leave your teen to learn about money the hard way. Credit Unions can help. Send them to MyCreditUnion.Gov to explore the many financial education resources available, especially for teens.