Talk To Your Teen About Credit Cards

Help prepare them for their financial future, and Start The Conversation Today.

You may not feel comfortable getting your teen a credit card right now, but it is never too early to talk about the benefits and risks of having one.

Credit Cards Are Not Free Money

Credit cards are a line of credit. This means they are debt until the bill is paid. Read the fine print on your credit card bill with your teen. Explain how quickly interest and late fees add up, and the burdens of long-term debt. “Teens need to learn the risks of credit cards,” cautions RCB Bank Mortgage Originator Kenneth Wohl. “They need to learn how to be responsible and not over extend credit.”

Learn How to Budget Expenses

“Before you discuss credit cards, teach your teens how to create a budget,” says RCB Bank Wealth Advisor Cathy Sang. Talk about bills and monthly expenses and how you manage them. Better yet, create a budget with your teen using an average beginning career income. Determine how much can be spent on bills and extras, such as shopping or eating out. This will teach them how to plan for and manage their expenditures, so they don’t overextend credit.

Credit Reports & Credit Scores Matter

Talk to your teen about credit reports and how they offer details on how people manage money. This is important for when they want to buy a car, for example. Explain how credit scores impact their ability to get lower loan and insurance rates. “Kids need to understand the importance of building a good credit history early,” says RCB Bank Wealth Advisor Mary Wood. “Using a credit card wisely, by paying off the balance each month, can help improve their future credit score.”

Opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the author and meant for generic illustration purposes only. Member FDIC.

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3 Ways to Teach Kids Good Money Habits

kids with hands raised

Spend, Save and Share Jars

Many parents teach their kids the value of hard work by paying them for chores. You can take this a step further by talking about what they can do with their hard-earned cash. Get three jars and add the label spend, save and share to the jars. Then sit down and talk to them about where they want to put the money and how much in each jar. This is also a great way to learn how to count change.

Budgeting for Groceries

Before you go to the grocery store, make a budget and shopping list of the items you need. Then have your kids guess the cost of different items. When you get home, compare the receipt with your shopping list and discuss the differences. This is also a great chance to teach kids the difference in price between name brand and generic items. Make a list of items and have your kids look online to find out how much money they can save by choosing generic items over name brand products.

Needs and Wants

Discuss the difference between needs and wants. In order to survive, you have needs. Food, water, shelter and clothing are examples. Wants are things you would like to have, but aren’t always necessary. Take this a step further by taking a large white sheet of paper and writing “needs” at the top of one column and “wants” at the top of the other. Then have your kids cut out images from magazines and grocery advertisements and put them in one of the two columns. Afterwards, you will have a visual to discuss their choices. There are gray areas, so be prepared to tell your kids why cookies are a food, but that doesn’t make them a need.

Opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the author and meant for generic illustration purposes only. Member FDIC.

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7 habits to teach young adults for financial success

Help young adults build wealth not debt

Teen girl removing money from wallet

The habits your kids pick up now will follow them throughout life. Guide them to good money habits with these tips.

Get$Fit Tip #1: Pay yourself first.

Did you know the average college debt for the graduating class of 2016 was $37,000?* Are your kids prepared to manage debt and build wealth at the same time? Do they know the secret to keeping car-buying costs as low as possible? What about how to prepare for unexpected expenses?

Get$Fit Tip #2: Take full advantage of your bank.

Teach your kids about money using our Learning Center, which offers uncomplicated money tips to help  build wealth, reduce debt and make money-smart decisions.

Also, help your kids begin building relationships at their bank and gain an understanding of services and resources available to them. Building a relationship with a banker now will help them in the future when it comes time to borrow money, begin investing and buy their first home.

Get$Fit Tip #3: Comparison shop for everything!

Student loans, college text books, rental properties, auto insurance, clothes – make it a habit to compare prices and look for the best deals. A little effort on your part can save you thousands of dollars.

Get$Fit Tip #4: Learn to budget.

Money flows out faster than it flows in. Building wealth is not about how much money you have, it’s about how you manage the money you have. Learn to live below your means. It’s the only way to build wealth.

Get$Fit Tip #5: Watch your credit score.

Your credit score is a history report on how well you manage your money. Pay bills on time and use credit cards carefully. The alternative is long-term debt and financial hardship.

Get$Fit Tip #6: Needs and wants are not the same thing.

There is never enough money to buy everything you want. Choose wisely. Today’s choices will affect your future financial well-being. Is instant gratification more important than a comfortable lifestyle?

Get$Fit Tip #7: Learn the secret to saving.

The easiest way to build wealth is to set up automatic savings. Have a portion of your wages automatically go into a savings and/or retirement account through payroll direct deposit. Invest in yourself.

* Institute of College Access and Success.

Opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the author and meant for generic illustration purposes only. Member FDIC.

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College Prep: Tools for Financial Success

Help your child manage money

teen on tablet

Set your young adult up for financial success with the right money management tools. Help transition financial responsibilities by setting up your child up with services designed to help deposit money, monitor accounts and guard against fraud.

Here are a few options that may benefit your young adult.

Anytime, anywhere banking
Mobile Banking & Mobile Deposit

Your young adult can check balances, pay bills, deposit and transfer money and find the nearest ATM or bank location from a smartphone. If child is going out of state, there is no need to switch banks. We can go anywhere. Download our Mobile Banking app. Once downloaded, you can sign up for Mobile Deposit.

Message, data rates, fees and deposit restrictions may apply. Subject to eligibility. Funds may not be available for immediate withdrawal.

Guard your account
Text Banking

With Text Banking, your young adult can set up text alerts and be notified anytime a transaction occurs on an account. This is a great fraud detection tool, as well as a budget tool to track account balances and monitor account activity 24/7.

Message and data rates and fees may apply.

We pay you to bank with us!
Rewards Checking

Let your young adult enjoy the same rewards you do.  We offer a variety of Rewards Checking accounts that meet your spending or saving preferences.

Some restrictions apply. Visit to learn more.

A money-saving, easy-tracking way to pay bills.
Online Bill Pay

With Online Banking and Bill Pay, your young adult can pay bills to companies, institutions or individuals in one location. Saves time and money. Schedule payments in advance or set them up to recur each month. Also, our calendar and history features, lets your young adult see past and future payments at a glance – a great budget too.

Some restrictions apply. eBills may not be available for some companies.

Money management in one convenient location.
Online Banking

Online Banking allows your young adult to bank whenever, wherever. He or she can make payments, transfer money, view monthly statements and set up email alerts for practically anything. Stay in the in clear with alerts for insufficient funds or low balances – great for young adults just starting out.

It’s important to remind your children never to bank while using public Wi-Fi.

Learn more about online and mobile banking best practices at on our Security Center.

Access more resources in our Learning Center to help you and your young one during their transition of finanical responsibilities.

Message, data rates, and fees may apply. All accounts utilizing service must be enrolled in eStatements to avoid fee. Subject to eligibility and further review. Deposits are subject to verification and may not be available for immediate withdrawal. Deposit limits and other restrictions apply. Full details at MemberFDIC

Minimum Reward Requirements: Ten (10) debit card transactions per rewards cycle and maintain e-Statement enrollment. Not maintaining e-Statements will result in forfeiture of rewards benefits. Minimum reward requirements listed must be met and post to the account in each rewards cycle, which begins on the first business day of the month and ends on the last business day of the month. Debit card transactions include merchant or point-of-sale transactions, and exclude refunds or ATM transactions. Some restrictions apply. A monthly fee of $3 will be assessed for accounts receiving a paper statement. Member FDIC

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Money prep for the real world

A parent's guide to money matters for young adults.

Mother with daughter holding books

Do you have a plan for your child’s transition from your checkbook to their own after they leave home? Have you discussed with  who will be expected to pay for what and for how long?

It’s time to have the talk.

Here is a 3-point guide to help you begin the transfer of money management responsibilities.

Have the talk.

Make a plan for your young adult’s transition from your checkbook to their own and communicate it with them. Start talking about money and life, about budgeting, expectations, unexpected expenses, credit and long-term effects of debt. Be sure you discuss who is paying for what. Set your young adult up for success.

Make sure your young adult has a checking account (and a savings account).

Already have one? You are set to go. If not, no worries. RCB Bank is local in many Oklahoma and Kansas college towns, like Stillwater, Norman, Wichita and Lawrence. Even if your young adult is moving out-of-state, we can go too. Our products are designed to serve you wherever you are. We offer a variety of mobile banking options that make it easy to bank wherever, whenever. Plus, keeping your young adult’s account with RCB Bank offers you easy access, in case you need to transfer money while helping them transition to adulthood.

Consider helping your young adult establish credit.

Building a good credit score now is important when it comes time to borrow money for a car or house later. Credit cards are not the only way to establish credit. Consider a Certificate of Deposit (CD) loan. To do this, have your young adult open a CD with money they’ve saved. Then talk to your banker about a loan against the money in the CD. This is a great option if you’re nervous about your young adult having a credit card.

Opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the author and meant for generic illustration purposes only. Member FDIC.

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Six money tips teens need to know before they leave home

Mother and Daughter holding sign

Is your child leaving the nest? Do they fully understand the daily financial issues that will soon become their reality? It’s never too early to start the conversation. Here are six money tips to teach your children before they leave home.

1. Know the real cost of things.

The price tag is rarely the actual cost. Talk about hidden fees, taxes and interest. Talk about personal expenses – utilities, car payments, mortgage, and unexpected purchases that can lead to financial trouble if you don’t plan for them, like auto repairs and medical expenses.

2. Learn to budget.  

Building wealth is not about how much money you make, it’s about how you manage the money you have. Money flows out faster than it flows in. Learn to spend less than you earn. Plan for purchases, comparison shop, negotiate terms and fees and save up money before buying things.

3. Be very careful with credit cards.

Talk about the pros and cons of credit cards. One missed credit card payment can set you on a course toward long-term debt. Misuse of credit cards can also hurt your ability to take out a loan for a car or house. Don’t be afraid to share your personal experience with credit card misuse or debt and the sacrifices you had to make to rise above it.

4. Needs and wants are not the same thing.

You will never have enough money to buy everything you want. Choose wisely. Is instant gratification more or less important than a comfortable lifestyle? Today’s choices will affect your future financial well-being. Again, share stories of choices and consequences.

5. Learn the secret to saving.

The easiest way to build wealth is to set up automatic savings. Enroll in payroll direct deposit. Schedule recurring automatic money transfers from checking to savings. Start small and increase with pay raises. If you learn to put money aside and live below your means when you are young, it will be easier to build wealth as you move up the ladder.

6. Consider your future.

Most adults in or nearing retirement wish they had saved more money. Nearly half of Americans have no retirement savings and still have to work when they are 70 and 80 years old. The younger you start saving, the greater control you’ll have over your financial well-being. Talk to your teens about your personal retirement preparations.

However you decide to prep your kids for the real world, be sure money is a topic of conversation.

Opinions expressed above are the personal opinions of the author and meant for generic illustration purposes only. Member FDIC.

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