Learn to manage money and prepare for the cost of higher education

You may still rely on financial help from your parents or other family member, but it’s not too early to start cultivating sound money-management habits. Many financially sound adults accomplished their goals through careful financial planning that began when they were students.

Take a look at the following steps that can help as you travel down this path.


Learn to manage money and prepare for the cost of higher education.
1. Become a "Star Saver"

Learning to save money in your teens and college years is an excellent habit that will train you to be a good money manager for the rest of your life. Our Consumer Bankers suggest you set goals for your money and start saving NOW. If you have no immediate goals, your goal can be to have a “money cushion” for when that important need for cash occurs.

Peoples Bank & Trust offers saving accounts specifically designed for students:

  • Building Block Savings – This is a great account for students under the age of 21.  It can be opened with as little as $10 and is service charge FREE.  It offers an attractive interest rate which is paid on a quarterly basis.
  • Target Savings – This account is similar to the old Christmas Club only you get to choose the special event (like household emergency fund) that you are saving for and you choose when you withdraw the money.

When you are 18, you may open a savings account on your own, Younger students may open savings accounts with the co-signature of a parent, and you need to do this together inside the bank.

2. Start a Checking Account

A checking account provides a means to learn how to responsibly handle cash, make smart financial decisions and keep track of your spending records. Whether you use a debit card or paper checks, your checking account can help you manage your budget, including paying your bills on time and balancing your checkbook. With these good habits, you can start building a good credit reputation NOW.

  • Peoples Value Checking – is the perfect solution for your first checking account.  A minimum balance of $100 is required, an $0.22 charge per item over 100 per month, ATM/debit card, as well as online banking to help you keep your account records current.

When you are 18, you may open a checking account on your own. Younger students may open checking accounts with the co-signature of a parent, and you need to do this together inside the bank.

3. Plan in Advance for College

It’s never too early for pre-college students and their families to identify and earmark the financial resources they have available to fund a college education—whether from savings, loans, grants, scholarships or work income. Peoples Bank & Trust offers many products tailored to this specific situation.  Planning is imperative and our Consumer Bankers will work with you to determine the most feasible options.

  • Federal Financial Aid for Higher Education (FAFSA) – All college applicants and their parents or guardians should become familiar with the most recent FAFSA guidelines and deadlines which can be found at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/. Applications for federal student aid may also be available from your high school counselors, public library, or college financial aid office.
  • US Government EE Savings Bonds - EE Bonds are reliable, low-risk government-backed savings products that you can use toward financing education and other special events.  These may be purchased online at http://www.treasurydirect.gov/.
  • Easy Builder CD- This is the perfect certificate of deposit for saving for college.  You can open the account with as little as $100 and make additional deposits weekly, monthly or whenever you have extra cash.
Tips for Effective Financial Management
  • Set a savings goal and keep track of your progress.
  • If you have a job, don’t spend everything you make.
  • Record ALL your transactions daily for your checking and savings accounts, whether they are made with debit or credit cards or paper checks and deposit slips.
  • Know your account details such as overdraft charges, interest rates, withdrawal restrictions, minimum balances, etc.

Please contact one of the Consumer Bankers at Peoples Bank & Trust today to get started on planning for your future. You have many financial goals to attain and we’re ready and willing to help you ensure they’re achieved.