Got Your Degree? Start Building Credit

by | Apr 29, 2020

NOTE: This news article is an archived post that was posted on the date above. The information contained in this post was applicable for that date only. Some of the information below may have expired.

If you are graduating college this spring, First Bank wants to congratulate you for working hard and finishing strong, especially in the midst of a global pandemic. Determined, dedicated people like you are going to help this country navigate and thrive in our ‘new normal.’ You’re doing great already, but as your Bank About Town, we want to equip you with financial know-how as you enter the working world.

Your college degree gives you credit in the working world. Your credit enables you to put your money to work for you.

Good credit allows you to apply for loans and make significant purchases, such as buying a car or a home. Have you considered the state of your credit? How are you going to handle your financial affairs after college? Here are a few tips from the FDIC on how to build credit after receiving your degree:

1. Make a budget.

It’s your money; you have the right to know where it’s going! Try to create a clear picture of your monthly income and expenses, including student loan payments. Write everything down, from rent to groceries to concerts and outings. Knowing your money and your habits will empower you as you begin to build credit.

2. Set up a payment plan.

Contact your creditors and make a payment plan that works for you. Instead of falling behind on payments, reach out to student loan and/or credit card companies and establish a payment plan. Many people schedule their essential monthly payments shortly after their paychecks are deposited. Some people establish extended payment plans with their creditors, which result in lower monthly bills over a longer period of time.

3. Make all payments on time.

Think about it: good credit means keeping your word. Find a payment system that works for you, then stick to it! Paying your credit card bills and student loans on time will keep your interest rates from going up and will improve your credit score.

Read more tips from the FDIC about dealing with debt here.

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