Advice for parents

Teach financial literacy. Don’t allow your students to graduate without being able to balance a checking account and without understanding how to manage credit. Insist they develop a forward-looking budget. Even if they don’t have student loans to repay, this document will help them decide what they can afford to purchase and when they can afford to buy. If you’re paying for college out-of-pocket, have serious money conversations with your students early and often. Establish a mutually agreed upon timetable to wean graduates off parental assistance.

Continue to fund your retirement and emergency accounts. This may be difficult if you’re paying for college out-of-pocket, but don’t let your essential accounts lapse completely. You’re doing more than putting money aside for a rainy day; you’re modeling smart money management for your children.

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