As students make the transition from high school to college, many of them consider opening their first bank account. Often referred to as Student Bank Accounts, this helps young adults get on the right path to financial freedom by helping with savings and spending. There are several things that all college freshmen should know about student bank accounts before they decide to apply for one either at their local community bank branch or online.
Do I Need a Checking Account and a Savings Account?
Most banks will give you the option to set up a checking account and a savings account that are connected or one of each separately. The benefit of having the two connected is that you can transfer funds easier and at some locations, use your savings account as a backup funding source.
While it is highly recommended to get a student checking account for writing checks or making purchases using a debit card, it is not always necessary to have a savings account. It’s a great option for students who are able to set aside their extra cash for emergencies or a big purchase. And setting aside just $5 or $10 per week can add up over time. Keep in mind that there are withdrawal limits on savings accounts, and if you go over that limit, you may have to pay extra fees to your bank.
Choosing the Right Bank
There are many things to take into consideration when choosing a bank for your student account. You need to pay attention to all the fees and charges. There are banks that will offer student accounts with no fees, and that would be the best option.
Another key feature to pay attention to when choosing a bank is how accessible it is to you. Are there many ATM locations near the college campus? Are there branches nearby so that you can visit a location in person if needed? It is a good idea to find a bank that has both branch and ATM locations in your hometown and near your campus so that you will always have quick access to your funds.
It’s important to pay attention to all the additional fees associated with checking and savings accounts at each bank. They will vary greatly at each location. Make sure that you aren’t paying too much for the same benefits by taking the time to compare fees before you apply for an account.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Account
A bank account is more than just a place to safely store your money. While that’s a great advantage, most banks now offer a wealth of modern features that can make keeping track of your balance much easier and less stressful.
Apps that you can use to access your bank account online have helped to change the way everyone uses their checking and savings account. Now you can transfer funds, set up automatic bill payments, send money to friends, and deposit checks all without ever entering a branch location. Finding a student account that offers these and other useful options can be a great benefit to busy students trying to keep up with school, work, and a social life.
Check Out Online Reviews
One of the best ways to find out which student bank account provider is the best option for you is to read up on online reviews. By doing so you can find out what other students have to say regarding their experience with some of the top banks in the nation. It’s always a great idea to do online research before you make a major purchase, the same is true when it comes to opening a student bank account. No two financial institutions are alike, and customers reviews can help you narrow down your choices to find the perfect one to fit your needs.
What Does FDIC Stand For and Mean?
You may have heard that you need to open an account with a bank that is FDIC-insured. But what does that actually mean? The FDIC or Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation provides insurance on your deposits, if your bank fails to cover the loss of funds, the FDIC will ensure that your losses are covered up to the maximum amount that is allowed by law. This is something that you should look for with any bank or financial institution all throughout your life and not just when you are searching for a place to open a student bank account.
Final Notes for Student Bank Accounts
Opening your first bank account is a major milestone. Doing so can help make your life easier as you make the initial steps toward a successful financial future. Staying with the same bank throughout your adult life as you start your career can also be very useful when it is time to start applying for home or auto loans.