Budget Planning for Youngsters

By: Ajeet Khurana

Can we really exist without creating stereotypes? Wherever we look we form yet another stereotype. Take the case of the relationship between students and their credit cards. One common stereotype that the majority of us have faith in is that no student has the capability of taking care of his own finances. We assume that just because someone is still a teenager (s)he will not be sensible enough to rein in her/his spending. Now, is that an accurate picture of the millions of students populating our world? I do not agree with that. In my experiences with younger people I have found that many of them are very well-grounded and are quite prepared to take care of their finances on their own.

Of course, not all youngsters are too prepared to enter the domain of credit cards. That certainly takes a little getting used to. There is so much jargon that one must become acquainted with. There are so many rules that have to be followed. There are so many monthly bills that have to be paid. In addition to all that, there is the immense ease with which a credit card allows you to pay the bills that keep getting accumulated. Once you have left the safety of your home and are living on campus, the joys of living footloose and fancy-free can be great. However, this new-found independence can encourage a person to lead an entirely different lifestyle and spend like crazy.

College is an entirely different experience. It can be quite a shock if it gets you while you are ill-equipped. And credit cards are one of the factors that are one important feature of student life. That is why more and more colleges are taking it upon themselves to teach their students about the need to use credit cards wisely. And colleges are not alone. Credit card providers have also decided to enlighten youngsters about the need to value their finances. They too have come up with courses (some of them certified courses) to explain to students and youngsters the various aspects of using credit.

Many youngsters behave as though credit cards do not have bills of their own. Several financial education courses teach teenagers about the credit cards and how best to use them. A college-goer could make the most of available credit card rewards by simply using her/his card sensibly. Reckless usage of credit cards can result in credit card debts. Students should be aware of this danger before making reckless spending a regular feature. A credit history can haunt one for years to come. However, that need not be your fate if you use your credit card well.

Money Management
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