Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter
In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.
¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.
²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.
³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.
4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.
Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.
Before you know it, your young children will be off to college and encountering a number of financial firsts such as renting an apartment, applying for a credit card and financing a car. The earlier you teach your children about budgeting and money management, the more equipped they will be to handle their finances as young adults.
For Many Teens, Financial Independence is a Cause of Anxiety
Many teenagers feel uncertain about their financial security as adults, according to Junior Achievement’s 2013 Teens and Personal Finance Survey.
The percentage of teens that feel they will be financially able to support themselves between the ages of 18 and 24, for example, has dropped from 75 percent in 2011 to 59 percent in 2013. Teenagers believe they will live with their parents longer, in part because they are unsure about their ability to budget, use credit or invest money.
You can help ease your children’s anxiety by preparing them now, while they are living at home, to use credit wisely and make smart financial decisions down the road. And there are resources out there that can help you in your efforts.
Arm Them With Financial Knowledge to Ease Their Fears
In metro Atlanta, Equifax is among several major companies and foundations who have partnered with Junior Achievement (JA) of Georgia to enhance the financial literacy of middle school students through JA Finance Park®, an interactive venue scheduled to launch in Atlanta in September. Currently, JA Finance Park facilities exist in more than 20 cities across the country.
The program begins in the classroom with a four-week personal finance curriculum provided by JA. The program culminates with a visit to JA Finance Park, one of two interactive sites at Junior Achievement’s Chick-fil-A Foundation Discovery Center.
During their day at the Park, each student will assume a profile with a specific job, income, education and family scenario. With this persona, they will work through different types of financial decisions they will encounter later in life, including decisions related to housing, transportation, food, utilities, health care, investments, charity and banking.
By the end of the day, students will have experienced real-world situations—understanding what it’s like to create a budget and learning how credit fits into the mix. For example, if a student visits the car dealership at JA Finance Park, he or she might get a car loan with a high interest rate if the student’s fictitious profile has a lower credit score.
“It’s gratifying for us to contribute to such an innovative program and collaboration between JA of Georgia and the Atlanta business community,” said Trey Loughran, president of Equifax’s Personal Solutions unit.
“If we’re able to collectively engage the young people of Atlanta in learning financial and budgeting fundamentals through this program, we all will benefit across our community over the longer term.”
The Big Picture
Financial literacy is about more than simply knowing how to track your spending and budget your paycheck. Those are good starting points, but children need to understand the impact of the financial decisions they make early on.
If children enter young adulthood with no concept of how to responsibly manage their personal finances, they could end up in financial trouble that will haunt them for years to come. If, for example, an 18-year-old young adult runs up large credit card balances that end up in collections, he or she may be unable to qualify for a mortgage at age 30—all because of those early decisions.
By teaching your children how to be responsible with money and credit from a young age, you can help them avoid financial disasters—and safeguard your own financial well-being. If you have to help your child recover from his or her mistakes, it could end up costing you, too.
Ilyce Glink is the author of ten books, including the bestselling 100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask. Her nationally syndicated column, “Real Estate Matters,” appears in more than 125 newspapers and Websites, and her online “Ask Ilyce” columns are read by hundreds of thousands of people every month. She is a top-rated radio host on WSB Radio in Atlanta, the Home Equity blogger at CBS MoneyWatch.com, host of the Internet program “Expert Real Estate Tips,” managing editor of the Equifax Personal Finance Blog, and publisher of ThinkGlink.com.
The information contained in this blog post is designed to generally educate and inform visitors to the Equifax Finance Blog. The blog posts do not give, and should not be assumed to provide, personalized tax, investment, real estate, legal, retirement, credit, personal financial, or other professional advice. Before making any financial decision, you should always consult with the appropriate professionals who can explain your options, rights, and legal responsibilities, and advise you on any tax, legal, credit, or business implications that may result from those decisions. The views and opinions expressed by the authors of blog posts are their own views and may not be the views or opinions of Equifax, Inc. and/or its affiliates.
Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.