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Banking & You

By Will from Holland

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Are you in high school or college? If so, which financial services are you using, if any? Do you have a checking account or savings account? Debit card or a credit card? Do you even know the difference?

Sooner or later, you will have to know a little bit about banking and the different types of products and services that are out there.

Why is that?

  • How will you store your money? In a sock?
  • How can you pay your bills? With cash…all the time?
  • How would you pay to fill up your empty gas tank in the middle of the night? Would you wait till morning for the gas station to open?

Obviously, that won't work. You'll need financial products and services sooner or later.

You're going to need a checking account, a debit card, online banking and even a little bit of knowledge on how to use these services to pay your bills (paying via online transfer, check, etc.).

And once you have these products and services, you'll need some basic money skills and understanding on how they work and the guidelines you need to be aware of when using them.

  • Do you know how to check the balance in your account so you don't write a check for more money than you have? Bang! If you don't, you'll be charged an overdraft fee and possibly hurt your credit.
  • Did you know if you overdraw your debit card by just $1… you can be charged a $20 "overdraft fee!" Bang!
  • Do you know which credit card is best for you (don't just pick the one with the coolest gift)? Bang! Picking the wrong one can cost you thousands, literally!

Is that it?

Absolutely not!

There are hundreds, even thousands, of other ways to make mistakes with your money. But however you may mess up, remember it's always your money (or your parents') AND your credit score that goes out the window.

So what should you do?

Start working through FoolProof right away!

FoolProof is a fun online program that helps you understand the basics of bank accounts, debit cards, credit cards, etcetera. You can work through just a single module on a topic, or a several at a time. You choose… Module 4 – "Road Trip", helps you understand all the banking details we've talked about. Module 6 – "Burning Money", helps you set up a budget to get the most out of your money.

Click the FoolProof link on this website, choose the program that is right for you (Solo, for instance, will let you "get ahead" on your own) and take control of your financial life right away.

I hope this helps. Good luck, and please let me know if you have any questions or need any assistance!

See you next time!

Cheers, Will.