Money Smarts 101: Preparing for College

The time has come to send your child off to college. After the decision of where to go is made, take a moment to look at your student’s money management needs. What will he use to buy food? How will she check her account balances? Will you be able to send money quickly and easily in an emergency? Use this checklist to make sure your student is financially prepared for this next stage in life.


  • Open a free checking account.

    A checking account is the easiest way access cash and track spending. A Mountain Community checking account is FREE, with no monthly fee and no minimum balance requirements.

  • Get a debit card.

    Your student can use a debit card for purchases at grocery stores, the college bookstore and more. Plus, a Mountain Community debit card provides access to 10,000 ATMs nationwide, so he/she can easily access cash when needed.

  • Sign up for online and mobile banking.

    Online and mobile banking make it easy to track spending and check balances, as well as make transfers when needed. Show your student how to use online/mobile banking and discuss how to avoid overdrawing an account.

  • Sign up for eStatements.

    With eStatements, your child will receive an electronic version of his or her statement every month. It’s the safe, secure and easy way to review monthly activity and check for fraud.

  • Create a budget.

    Sit down with your child and create a budget. Map out monthly expenses and discuss discretionary spending. You may need to talk about whether your student should consider a part-time job while in school.


Plus, when you and your child both have checking accounts at HFCU, you’re able to easily transfer funds into his or her account – so you have peace of mind knowing you can help if there is an emergency and your student needs money.