Young adults nationwide and beyond are headed off to campus for the start of a new school season. For many of these college-age students, this will be a time for financial independence, which means learning to budget and save as well as making smart choices when it comes to selecting credit cards and establishing checking accounts.
With so many options available, the decision can be daunting for a student, particularly if this is their first experience with establishing credit and creating a checking account on their own. That's why a recent study put forth by the personal finance site, WalletHub, is a useful resource for parents and students seeking 2017's best student credit cards and checking accounts.
By reviewing and assessing more than 1,750 accounts, WalletHub chose their top picks for credit card companies and banks to determine which were best suited for students to leave them with the least financial burden as they launch into adulthood.
When it comes to credit cards, WalletHub compared and contrasted fees, rewards, and interest rates of hundreds of cards. The top two were Journey Student Rewards from Capital One and BankAmericard Cash Rewards for Students. Capital One's card offers 1% cash back for all purchases and an additional .25% when bills are payed on time. Plus, there is no annual fee. BankAmericard was a favorite thanks to their $150 sign-up bonus, 3% cash back on gas, 2% on groceries, and 1% on all other purchases. This card has no annual fee as well. For more of WalletHub's top credit card selections, see the full report.
In the arena of checking, WalletHub dug deep into rates, fees, and other features and ultimately named Northpointe Bank UltimateAccount and Bank of Internet USA X Checking as the standouts. Northpointe has no monthly fee and offers $10 in ATM fees reimbursed monthly. Bank of Internet USA also has no monthly or overdraft fee and all U.S. ATM fees are fully reimbursed. Learn more about these checking accounts and some other recommended picks from WalletHub.
Along with their picks for the best cards and checking accounts, WalletHub offers important advice when it comes to picking the right credit card(s) and bank accounts as well as money-saving tips from a general perspective. From ruling out cards with annual fees to making a budget to taking advantage of on-campus financial resources, WalletHub gives a broad picture of what it takes to be financially sound as a student.
Parents can help their children become money-savvy as well, and starting early is imperative. Teaching teens about money management should be a parental duty. Here are 4 tips that parents can use to help their kids learn about money and how to save and spend wisely.
For those who are off to college… good luck! Use WalletHub's insight to help you become financially intelligent and keep on top of the rest of your studies too!
What is Robinhood?
The Robinhood app debuted in 2013 as a first-of-its-kind revolutionizing free investment platform. Much like the 700-year-old story of the hero to the people, Robin Hood, FinTech entrepreneurs Vladimir Tenev and Baiju Bhatt created the platform in order to make stock trading easily accessible to the general public and not just the wealthy.
The National Financial Educators Council (NFEC) surveyed young adults in 2017 and asked them what high school level course would benefit their lives the most.
The majority responded that money management was the course that would be most beneficial.
With personal debt is at its highest record and COVID-19 threatening to have the hardest economic effects on youth, understanding money and finances is an important life lesson that should be taught to children at a young age.
The following is a list of the best financial literacy lessons and tips to teach children throughout different life stages.
I thought I had a pretty good handle on my finances out of school. I worked several jobs while attending university and had little to no problem managing my income. However, once I graduated, I realized how much more complicated personal accounting could really be.
There were so many variables I needed to keep track of. Biweekly bills, monthly charges, and general necessities amounted to a heap of confusing numbers that were often impossible to decipher. The funniest part was that I was actually trying to do this by hand (I don't know what I was trying to prove to myself, either).
After messing up for the 17th time, I decided to give Microsoft Excel a shot. I used Excel a bit in school and I knew all the big-wig finance people used it, so what could I possibly have to lose? The answer is about six hours of my precious time. Excel isn't much of an improvement over handwriting and it's still dependent on the user to manually input all of the information. It's like doing everything by hand with the slightest help, meaning that it still required a tremendous amount of time and concentration. Well that was all for nothing, I guess.
It's sort of funny. I was certain that I could manage my personal finances with ease, when it's practically a full-time job. I was already stressed out enough with my first job and I knew I didn't have enough time to give my finances the attention it deserved.
That's why I decided to try out a budgeting app. My best friend told me that he uses an app called Truebill to manage his finances. "What does it even mean to manage your finances?" I asked him. He told me that Truebill was the personal financial assistant I wished I could have. It could aggregate all of my account information into one place and give me specific insights and actions.
I loved the idea of having full control over my finances, especially during a time of financial uncertainty, and I realized that Truebill would be the easiest way to accomplish this. The user interface is incredibly simple and intuitive, so it doesn't even feel like a finance app! Truebill offers a multitude of features, with their most popular being the ability to cancel subscriptions with the press of a button.
Okay, I had no idea how many subscriptions I was still subscribed to. In fact, I wasn't even using a quarter of the subscription services I was signed up for. Subscription boxes, streaming services, my old gym, and even an old subscription to my favorite magazine--it was all there and I was livid. How could I let myself waste all of this money and how did I never catch this? Thank goodness for Truebill.
Truebill also offers bill negotiations. There is a 40% fee based on how much you save and Truebill even claims that there is an 85% chance that they'll be able to lower your bill once a negotiation is requested. Why wouldn't I take them up on this? There was zero risk and I would only have to pay once my bill was lowered (which means that I would be saving money regardless).
More standard features of Truebill include the ability to generate a credit report on-demand and even request a pay advance. I only used the pay advance feature once when I wanted to buy a gift for my mom, but didn't have enough cash in hand and Truebill automatically reimbursed itself when I got my next paycheck.
The credit report is another fantastic feature and practically taught me what good credit meant. Truebill's credit report basically shows you which financial decisions have the most significant impact on your credit score and ways that you can improve your credit month-over-month. I've never had such control over my credit and it feels good.
I'll be the first to admit that I was extremely naive coming out of school. I figured that as long as I was attentive, I could manage my finances with ease. We manage money to some extent throughout our entire lives, but once you're thrown out on your own, it's a completely different story. With Truebill, I've finally been able to take control over my finances and stay on top of all of my responsibilities.