As children grow into young adults and move from their home to the college dorm, it brings a lot of changes for both the student and their parents. The young adult suddenly has a lot of independence, which is also accompanied with a greater level of responsibility. However, this increased freedom does not mean that guidance and help from home is unwelcome or unnecessary.

While in college, many students will get a credit card. In fact, a new study reveals that 35% of college students have one. The potential negative effects of using a credit card, however, may not be fully realized by young adults who are consumed with studying for finals and partying with friends. They may fail to see how their credit card use could harm their future endeavors.

The Better Business Bureau (BBB) has offered some tips for parents and students that can help ensure that a student’s credit score remains favorable:

  • Parents can add their child to an already existing account. By doing so, the student will inherit the parent’s good credit rating. This will also allow parents to monitor their child’s spending habits while the child builds credit in his/her name.

 

  • Parents should set limits to their child’s credit card. Advisers suggest that the credit card should only be used for emergency purchases; such as, car repairs and accidents.

 

  • Parents should take time to teach their children the importance of their credit score. Parents should take the time to educate their children on the importance of a good credit score and how it can affect them for their entire life. Paying bills on time and not carrying a large balance month-to-month go a long way in preventing a bad credit score.

 

  • Warn young adults about credit fraud and identity theft. Young adults are an easy target because they have a clean credit score. Parents should advise their children to never give out their personal information, and always log out of accounts on public and shared computers.

For some, this advice may come too late. The damage to the credit score has already been done, and doors have begun to close. Bad credit means higher interest rates on your credit cards and loans, difficulty securing leases, inability to secure a cell phone contract and difficulty in starting your own business.

While repairing bad credit takes time, not all plans must come to a halt. Starting a business can actually help in repairing your credit score, as long as you can find a way to get it off the ground first. A credit repair merchant account from a high risk provider is a great to begin the process. Regardless of bad credit, it is still possible to build your future and credit score at the same time.

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