Your Money


It starts with respect

Respecting your money starts in your wallet! Whether it’s tracking how you’re spending, figuring out the best ways to save what you have or even how to get more, you’ll want to have a plan that keeps you in control of what’s coming in and out of your wallet. Below are some things to consider to help get you on your way:

The Balancing Act – Needs vs. Wants

List your expenses in order with your needs coming first, followed by your wants. If you have a school or credit card bill to pay or need money for gas and groceries, you’ll want to plan for those expenses before you purchase a new 55” TV – it wouldn’t fit comfortably in your dorm room anyway!  

Think about it this way: needs are absolute necessities (food, clothing, shelter) or near necessities that help us function within society (reliable transportation, person and child care expenses, utilities). Wants are virtually everything else that becomes a luxury. An example would be food is a need but grabbing a slice of pizza from your favorite spot on Friday night is a want.

A Winning Budget

A winning budget is a great tool to help you respect your money and keep control of your wallet.

Manage Your Wallet Everyday – Having a Banking Relationship

Keeping track of what’s coming in and out of your wallet is also a key piece to respect your money. It’s important to have a healthy relationship with a financial institution – a credit union or bank – that can help you put together a money plan to help you manage your money today and maximize it for tomorrow.

Work with a credit union or bank to build your relationship with your money by opening a checking and savings account. Each type of account serves a very specific purpose.

  • Checking Accounts - Your checking account with a debit card can help you move your day-to-day money around – for things like paying bills, buying books or grabbing a quick snack.
  • Savings Accounts - Savings accounts help you keep an eye out on the future as you save for goals and life’s little emergencies.

The Basics of Savings Success

Want to save, but not really sure how? Here are a few things to consider to get you going:

Getting to the Goal! Determining what’s important to you is the first step to saving success. After all, we usually spend or save for the things we want and need most! Take some time to think about what’s important to you and how your money can help or hinder you from achieving your dreams. Like to travel with friends? Enjoy technology? Want to retire early? Consider these things and then count the cost and start saving!

From here you’re ready to set some money goals that will help you turn your dreams into a plan. It’s good to have something you’re targeting to keep you focused. You can set short-term goals – those happening in the next several months to a year; midterm goals happening in the next 3-5 years or even long-term goals that will happen in more than five years.

Don’t set too many, and be sure they’re SMART – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-oriented. Some sample smart goals while you’re in school might be:

Now you’re ready, so S.T.A.R.T – That’s right, Set a goal, Take action, Adjust as needed, Reward progress, then Tackle another goal! Get going!

Here are a few tips to help you get to the goal when it comes to saving. Stay tuned to our creative hacks section for even more tips.

Add up your savings opportunities with our calculator!


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