It's really important to get a grip on your finances and learn to stick to budgets. That's why it's one of those things that I put on my bucket list to do before I turn 30--pay off my debt and stick to a budget. October 18th is National Get Smart About Credit Day and there are a few banks here in Minnesota that are helping to educate young people about the importance of using their credit wisely.

  • Center National Bank, Litchfield
  • U.S. Bank National Association, statewide
  • Wells Fargo Bank, statewide
  • Northwestern Bank, Ulen
  • Old National Bank, West Saint Paul

Participating banks will have volunteer bankers on-hand speaking with 8th grade classes about how credit works.

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It's important to talk to your kids about how credit works and teach them good habits for the future. Some tips for using credit wisely include;

  • Create a budget of your monthly expenses. It's important to know how much money you're bringing in and how much needs to go out every month.
  • Borrow only what you can afford to pay back. Credit cards have limits...and that doesn't mean it's free money. It also isn't a challenge to try to spend up to the limit. You should treat your credit card like your debit card. Only spend what you have.
  • Pay your bills on time.
  • Carry credit card balances responsibly. If you have to put things on credit...make sure you can afford the monthly payments.
  • Check your credit report at a minimum of once per month. There are many free options online to check your score. Typically your bank should have a free option for you.

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