There are many things you should speak to your kids about before they go to college. Most of these things should be discussed long before that, but some wait. Things like sex, personal safety, and drugs are often discussed, and should be at the forefront of concern, of course, but there are some other things that might make a big difference in your child’s life. One concern is finances, and in particular, student credit cards. Some parents don’t even think about these, but they really should for many reasons.
For some reason, student credit cards are pushed on college kids quite often. They might run into these at many events, and often they’re offered a free gift for signing up. They’re rather easy to get, and many students end up with them. Student credit cards aren’t necessarily a bad thing, but they could spell trouble for the student that’s not prepared for the responsibility of having money to spend that they’ve yet to earn. This is why it is a must to talk with your kids about them before they go.
The first steps towards financial independence can happen in high school when children get their first jobs. These are great because they teach them about money and savings, and how to manage spending. This might also prepare them for student credit cards because this will not be the first time they have to manage funds. A child that has not had a job yet, or earned money in any way, is going to be more prone to abuse student credit cards. This is simply due to a lack of experience more than anything else. They also don’t realize the long term impact something like this could have on their life.
If you want to speak about student credit cards with your child, remember that they are probably going to get them whether you care about it or not. I remember being issued one in college when I had no source of income what-so-ever. They’re very easy to get, as companies hope to find customers that’ll stick with them far beyond college. Let your child know the dangers of abusing student credit cards, and the important information they need to know about getting and keeping good credit. You can’t control what they do, but speaking with them about credit cards can make a difference in their choices down the road when you’re not there to help them.