Should Teens and College Students Have Credit Cards, Part 2

After High School

Should teens have credit cards?After your child graduates high school, it is common for the parents to yield to his or her desire for complete independence. While there is certainly a benefit to increased independence, both parent and child soon realize that graduating high school does not always mean much in terms of life lessons learned. For this reason, it might be best to take an active role in helping your child choose a credit card. This credit card should have a low limit (500 dollars should be fine) and a low interest rate. If you can find it, a card with no annual fee is also ideal. If your child (who is now, technically, an adult) allows it, also consider signing up for a joint credit card. This can be a sticky situation, but usually an agreement that you will only pay attention to the balance and ignore or make no judgments on the types of purchases made unless the balance exceeds an agreed upon amount will work.

Finally, a family “emergency card” is also an excellent idea. This card would be tucked away, not to be used except in the case of emergency. This is perfect because it not only teaches responsibility, but restraint.

Links for Students:

Financial Planning: Kids and Credit Cards
Financial Literacy Facts
Young Money Magazine: Your Credit Score
What is a Teen Credit Card?
Tips for Teens
Protecting Your Teen Identity
Teenagers and Credit Cards – Beware
Manage Your Money in College
Five Tips for Opening a Teen Checking Account
College Students and Credit Card Information
Credit CARD Act’s Benefits to Students and Other Young People
Making Credit Cards Work for You
Dos and Don’ts of College Credit Cards
College Credit Card Statistics
Choosing a Credit Card
How to Establish, Use, and Protect Your Credit
Building a Strong Credit Report Record After High School
Money Management: Tips to Get Started
Using Your Credit Cards Wisely
Credit Card Tips for Every Stage of Life

Links for Parents:

For Parents: How to Teach Your Teen About Money
Is Your Teen Ready?
Tips for Your Credit-Smart Teen
Do Teens Know the Basics of Personal Finance
Prepare Your Teens to Avoid Bad Credit