As the school year comes to a close, many kids and teens are looking for ways to earn a few dollars during the summer months. Whether it’s extra chores around the house, odd jobs like dog-walking or babysitting, or full-time summer employment, there are many different ways they can make money. But do they know how to manage their summer earnings?
Origin Bank is here to help. We believe it’s never too early to teach financial literacy, because when young people understand the basics of money, they stand a much better chance of building good financial habits that last a lifetime.
Here are some financial basics to help kids get started:
1. Budgeting Basics
Having a budget and sticking to it is not about constantly saying “no” every time you want to buy something. Rather, it's putting yourself in control – tracking your spending, setting goals and reaching them.
Knowing how budgets work is an important part of developing good financial habits. Origin Bank makes creating and managing a budget fast and simple with our free Personal Financial Management Tool. Built into our online banking and mobile app, this valuable resource helps you build your budget, monitor your progress and stick to your financial goals.
2. Checking and Savings Accounts
Checking accounts can be used for buying everyday items like food or paying monthly bills. Using a checking account is as simple as writing a check or swiping your debit card when you make a purchase or pay a bill.
Checking accounts require keeping track of your money carefully and recording every transaction. If you write checks or swipe your card for more money than you have in your account, you could be charged overdraft fees. These fees can add up fast and cause financial strain, so be sure to stay on top of your spending.
Having a savings account is a smart choice for stashing money over time. Savings accounts earn interest, which means the bank puts a small amount of extra money into your account each month based on how much you have. The more you have in your account, the more interest you earn over time. You don’t have to be an adult to have either checking or savings accounts.
Origin Bank offers a student checking account that’s easy to set up. Kids need a valid high school or college ID and an adult to sign for them if the child is under 18 years of age. Origin will even waive the monthly $8 service charge.
3. Understanding ATM, debit, and credit cards
ATMs, debit cards and credit cards are convenient, but they also require careful oversight. Debit and credit cards often look identical, so it’s important you understand the difference between them and that you have a plan for how to best use them.
A debit card allows you to spend money you’ve already deposited into your checking account. Card reader machines at the register connect directly to your account when you swipe your debit card, so each purchase you make is subtracted from your account immediately. To easily track your spending in real-time, use a mobile banking app and enable debit alerts.
When you use a credit card, you are essentially borrowing money to buy something. That means you could pay interest on top of the purchase price if you do not pay your monthly statement balance in full.
You may not know this, but ATM stands for “automated teller machine.” They’re great for basic transactions like withdrawing money, making a transfer, and some machines can even accept deposits.
Debit cards are available at no charge with Origin Bank’s student checking accounts. There are no monthly service charges, full mobile app capabilities, and parents can easily transfer funds from their regular Origin account into a student account. Origin also provides many convenient ATM locations and banking centers throughout Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi.
At Origin Bank, we believe that even when school is out, learning doesn’t have to end. It’s never too early to help kids and young adults develop the knowledge and money management skills to help them achieve long-term financial success. To take a deeper look into the topics covered here, please visit our Basics of Banking blog series on our website.