Personal Finances for College Students

One of the best subjects students can master while attending college is personal finance. For many students, it may be the first time they will have to balance a checkbook, cope with a credit card or stretch a budget.

To handle their finances, say experts, students need a checking account with a check card and online banking, as well as a savings account.

Here are some tips to consider when setting up student finances:

• Students should find a bank with national reach. That way students can do their their banking at home, school and when they travel.

• Parents may want to consider linking student accounts with their own, so they can keep an eye on the student's spending, or easily transfer money when necessary.

• Students may want to get a check card that is widely accepted and that offers programs to help protect against fraud.

• By signing up for online banking, students can check their balances, receive and pay bills, view statements and transfer money between accounts online anywhere and anytime they have Internet access-all for free.

• Qualifying students can start building a solid credit history by getting a credit card and paying off the balance every month. Students should look for cards that are safe, convenient and free. Students also should discuss with their parents whether a cosigned card is necessary.

Helping students prepare before they leave for school can give them a solid start to a responsible and successful financial future.

For more information about financial products and online tools for students and parents, go to

Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk-management products and services.

College can be a good time to start building a solid credit history, if you get a card and make payments on time.

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