Financial Education 101: The Basics
Sharpen your money-management skills on the flight to your future! Financial education at an early age promotes economic stability and avoids daunting debt, for money-saving decisions after high school graduation. Jumpstart your life by discovering the basics:
KNOW HOW TO BALANCE YOUR CHECKBOOK
In earlier years, your parents sat down with their receipts and account statement to carefully sift through and match up account transactions. Now growing up in a tech-savvy world, it’s beneficial to know the basics of monitoring your transactions. The phrase “balance your checkbook” means you’ve noted your deposits and withdrawals, and are monitoring your purchases and payments regularly!
Keeping a close-eye on your transactions prevents overdraft fees, fraud activity, and financial mishaps, to support your budget or savings goals. The modern-day convenience of online and mobile banking can provide account alerts, the ability transfer money, deposit checks virtually, review your transactions, etc. Plenty of cool apps are available to keep you up-to-date managing your money.
KNOW YOUR ACCOUNT OPTIONS
Opening a savings and checking account as a teen builds confidence for healthy spending behavior to make the best saving decisions for your future. Of course, checking and savings accounts are not the same, as each are meant for specific saving reasons. Consider overdraft fees, ATM accessibility, and account options when comparing and before choosing a financial institution.
BECOME AWARE OF COST-OF-LIVING
Unforeseen challenges happen when living independently, especially when you’re presented with new responsibilities. Basic necessities including groceries, vehicle maintenance, insurance, utility bills, etc. are common expenses within a monthly budget. Don’t forget about kitchen/dining ware and bath/bedroom items. All are costs needed to be considered when living on your own.
Helping cook/shop for groceries, budgeting allowances/paychecks, and paying your cellphone bill are all responsibilities that can teach you how to stay on track financially.
LEARN HOW TO FILE YOUR TAXES
Teaching yourself the basics about taxes can seem unimportant now, but becoming familiar with tax forms/terms isn’t intimidating as it looks! According to the National Society of Accountants, the average tax preparer fee can range up to $273 or higher, depending on the complexity of your financial situation and region area.
Receive hands-on-experience and complete IRS certification/training with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or Tax Counseling for the Elderly program. You get the opportunity to provide free basic income tax return preparation for qualified individuals, allowing you to serve the community and practice tax-filing skills.
UNDERSTAND PAYING OPTIONS FOR COLLEGE
Become familiar with resources available to assist in paying for college expenses! Whether you’re beginning freshman year of high school, transitioning into a sophomore/junior, or in the last year as a senior, planning early prepares for your college adventure.
FASFA: This Free Application for Federal Student Aid gives access to Pell Grants (free money the government provides) and student loans. Likewise, many colleges use your application’s info for their own need-based awards.
Scholarships: There are tons of scholarships offered by individuals, private companies, employers, nonprofit/social organizations, schools, and more. Finding local awards, not mentioned in most national databases, increases your chances to win because they’re less-competitive. Apply to as many as possible, no matter the award amount, every dollar counts! Remember, beware of scams—scholarships should not require fees.
Private Loans: After exhausting federal aid and scholarships, a private loan can be necessary. Choosing a credit union with trustworthy service, friendly rates, and flexible payment options helps cover education costs to meet your career goals!
I See Me..Do You C.U.?
Become a member of our Young Adult Financial Group to receive exclusive opportunities & high school seniors are able to enter our annual $1500 College Scholarships program!
For more tips on financial basics ask us below!