SEATTLE – The University of Washington and other colleges get back to class this week. It’s coming at the end of a period bank call “student rush”
Banks typically see many incoming freshmen walking in to open accounts for the first time between mid-August and mid-September.
College is also a time when students get their first credit card. During the rush, bankers advise students on ways to avoid getting into debt.
"My advice to everyone is if you have a credit card for the first time, be disciplined. Be smart with it. Pay off your bill. Don't carry over those balances,” said Nathan Nguyen, a Senior VP of Bank of America.
With all the independence that comes with college, Nguyen says there's also a great deal of responsibility and stress.
Nguyen recommends students and parents open up a joint account so parents can access it quickly in case of an emergency and as a way to keep tabs on a student’s finances to make sure they're not slipping into debt.
Nguyen also advises students to figure out their budget for the entire school year such as expenses for books, meals and going out with friends.