Graduation season has arrived, ushering into the world a new group of young people who are headed into the workforce and into higher education. If you’re among the scores of high school graduates this season, there are some things you’ll need to succeed financially.
Everyone needs a checking account. It will keep your money safe and accessible. Not only is money in the bank protected from flood, fire and robbery, it is also FDIC insured.* This means your money is safe until you are ready to use it. Yet it is still easily accessible for online bill paying, for purchases with debit card or check and for withdrawal from an ATM, bank, or cash back in a store.
One piece of advice we hear from older folks all the time is to start saving early. Even if you don’t have a lot of money, it’s important to stash away as much as you can every chance you get. A VCNB Passbook Savings account gives you a safe place to keep your savings separate from the spending money in your checking account.
Online and Mobile Banking
You are on the go a lot. That means you will want to have quick access to your money. You’ll want to know how much you have, be able to schedule bill payment online and transfer funds between your checking and savings account with ease. Having online banking and mobile banking, like VCNB Mobile, your accounts are at your fingertips 24 hours a day.
As mentioned above, you need to be able to buy things. A debit card is safer than carrying around a pocketful of cash. Most retailers today accept plastic making it the most popular way to pay in most stores and restaurants.
Here at VCNB we offer something called Popmoney® personal payment service that allows customers to send money to another individual with just their mobile phone number or email address. If you’re headed off to college, this is an easy way for parents or grandparents to send their favorite college student a little pizza money from time to time.
Here’s a little more food for thought – You may think these crazy bankers have unrealistic expectations. You are just starting out and don’t have much money to save or to spend so you’re wondering why all this is so important. We’ll tell you why: when you’re young and without resources is a great time to learn how to do more with less. We find that people who learn to manage a bank account when they have limited funds are more likely to manage their money well when they are more established with a full time job and higher income. When you have a small balance and just a few bills is a perfect time to learn how to create a budget, reconcile your account and manage your finances responsibly.
One last thing – While you’re just getting started in a career or higher education, it’s important to think toward the future and toward building good credit. Talk to your parents and to a trusted banker about applying for a small balance bank credit card which you can learn to manage responsibly or about co-signing for a small loan so you can get the hang of paying a monthly payment for something you need. Building a strong foundation for credit usage which you manage responsibly is something everyone should work toward.
*FDIC deposit insurance covers the depositor up to $250,000 per depositor and per account type at each bank.