|Convenience, wide services important for college banks|
|Written by Jacob Lambert, Daily Vidette Staff Writer|
|Monday, 10 October 2011 20:56|
For many students, college marks the beginning of true financial independence.
Those looking for a place to invest their money while in school need look no further than Bloomington-Normal, a community teeming with banks.
According to Vladimir Kotomin, associate professor of finance, selecting a bank is a matter of assessing your personal wants and needs.
“Decide what’s important to you in a depository institution …then decide your bank on these criteria” Kotomin said. “It may be convenient branch and ATM locations, availability of certain services, or low [to] no fees, even on accounts with small average balances.”
Furthermore, Kotomin suggests the right questions can go a long way in helping students find the bank that best fits them.
“I would ask questions about the fees the bank charges on the type of account [you’re considering] and types of services you anticipate using frequently [such as] money orders or wire transfers,” he said.
Recent developments in the banking world may also have an impact on students’ banking decisions.
According to a recent New York Times article, a slow economy and the need to increase profit has led some national banks – particularly Bank of America –as well as some regional banks to implement monthly debit card fees as high as $5.
Mitchell Larkins, junior politics and government major and Chase banker, said he will not hesitate to move his money should he see these monthly charges on his bank statements.
“If I saw that Chase was implementing these charges I would no longer offer my services to their company,” he said.
“I would rely on my credit union back home where I can be sure they wouldn’t do such a thing,” he added.
ISU is home to its own locally owned credit union, located on the second floor of the Bone Student Center.
“I think students and parents choose [ISU Credit Union] because we’re the only financial institution on campus … we’re convenient,” Amy Park, marketing coordinator for the ISU Credit Union, said.
She added that credit unions are unique because they are not-for-profit institutions that are owned and controlled exclusively by members.
Kotomin recommended that students looking for a bank to think long term.
“Ask yourself if the bank you have or are considering is likely to serve your needs after graduation,” Kotomin said. “Keep in mind that if you have a long relationship with a financial institution, you may have an easier time getting approved for a loan there.”
Kotomin added that regardless of where students decided to put their money, learning about personal finance and budgeting could prove highly beneficial.
“…This knowledge is likely to save you tens of even hundreds of thousands of dollars over a lifetime,” Kotomin said.