Going to College

Congratulations on your decision to continue your education. Going to college is a great opportunity to not only gain knowledge in your chosen field, but to learn valuable life lessons, including how to manage your finances.

Access Your Money No Matter Where You Go to School

Use these tools to stay in close contact with your money.

Netbranch Online Banking: Access your accounts, make transfers, pay bills, and more with this user-friendly and secure connection. Electronic alerts, notifications and statements make watching your account easy.

Mobile Banking: Diamond has mobile banking for practically any devices. Use our free Android or Apple app, sign up for text message banking, or use our mobile website.

Visa Debit Cards:Use your Diamond Visa Debit Card at the bookstore, online, or practically anywhere else. And Diamond doesn’t charge a fee for getting cash back at the register.

ATMs Everywhere: Diamond is part of a no-fee ATM network that hosts over 50,000 ATMs across the country. Use our No-Fee ATM search to locate no-fee ATMs nearest your college!

Online Transfers: There is no need wire money or mail a check! With NetBranch Online Banking your parents can transfer money directly from their Diamond account to your account. You can also use NetBranch to transfer money back to your parents, transfer funds between your own accounts, check balances, and more.

Deposit Checks from Your Dorm Room: Diamond’s Instant Deposits Online service allows you to deposit checks online through NetBranch Online Banking. Then you just drop the checks in the mail. Visit our Instant Deposits Online page for complete details.

Direct Deposit Your Paycheck: If your employer offers direct deposit, you can use it at Diamond. We’ll even split your direct deposit paycheck up into a few different accounts if you request it. Put your spending money in your checking account, and save for your next big expense in a savings account.

To learn more about setting up your first checking account, please visit the First Accounts page.

Paying For College

It’s no secret that college is expensive, and it’s up to you how much you are willing to spend, save, and take out in loans. Diamond is here with tips on Saving for College, Scholarships, Financial Aid, Additional Student Loans, and Credit Cards.

Savings Accounts: If your college plans are still a little far in the future, you have time to start saving! A great way to get started is to open a Diamond Customizable Club Account. It’s a simple savings account that you can name to fit your savings goal. You can request to have part of your payroll direct deposit automatically sent to your “College” club account, and/or you can manually deposit or transfer money as you see fit.

Another way to help your savings grow is to open a Share Certificate. Share Certificates earn a higher interest rate than basic savings accounts and are set-up for a specific length of time. Once you’ve saved at least $1,000, you can choose a term that works for you. If you plan to start college in 6 months, open a 26 week certificate, or if you plan on starting sooner, go for the 45 day certificate. When the term is over, use your money for whatever you need.

For information on how to set up your Customizable Club Account or Share Certificate, please visit the First Accounts page.

Scholarships: Scholarships are a great way to help pay for college without accumulating debt. Diamond offers the Alfred A. Panfile Academic to student-members each year. Ask your career counselor if Diamond is offering one at your school.

Financial Aid: The office of Federal Student Aid provides grants and loans to help fund your education. The great thing about financial aid loans, is that you will not have to start paying them back until after you graduate. For more information about Federal Student Aid, please visit: https://fafsa.ed.gov/

Additional Student Loans: In some cases, scholarships, financial aid, and your savings still don’t add up to the total investment you need to make. Whether you’re having trouble with the cost of tuition, housing, or books and other college necessities, you might consider applying for a Smart Option Student Loan by Sallie Mae.

Personal Loans: You don’t need any collateral to open a personal loan or line of credit. If you’re just starting out, this may be the best choice for you. Many students have used personal loans to pay for their college computer. Learn more about Diamond Personal Loans on our Loans & Credit page.

Secured Loans: If you own your car or a home, an auto or home equity loan may be a good choice. Call our loan experts at 800-593-1000, option 4, and ask them which loan is best for your needs.

Credit Cards

A credit card is a valuable tool to have during the school year when buying books and other supplies. It’s also a great way to start building your credit. But, it’s important to be responsible with your credit card, or you may end up in debt and even hurt your credit score. Here are some tips to keep you from getting into a credit trap.

Don’t Run Up a High Balance: Your credit card can help you buy the things you need for school as soon as you need them, but only if you have credit available. If you run your balance up with frivolous purchases, you won’t have any room left for a semester’s bookstore total or a new computer. Be thoughtful about what you put on your card and make sure you leave room for the important stuff.

Pay Your Bill on Time: This might seem like common sense, but pay your bill on time every month. Even one missed or late payment can negatively affect your credit score.

Don’t Just Pay the Minimum: Sometimes it can be hard to pay more than the minimum payment when you’re on a budget, but it is in your best interest to pay as much as you can afford. Every month a balance sits on your card is another month of interest your credit card company will charge you. If you can, try paying the balance off completely each month. If you can’t afford to pay for an item that month, decide if you really need it and how much you’re willing to pay. A small purchase that sits on your balance for a long time will end up costing you much more than the original price.

Choose your card wisely: Many credit card companies will entice you with a low introductory rate or special reward, only to stick you with an astronomical rate and extra fees in the end. Read the fine print on your credit card offers and see what the rate will be in 6 months or a year, before applying. Also, choose a credit card from a local institution you can trust. In Pennsylvania credit card companies are not permitted to charge more than 18% interest on a credit card. If you have a credit card that is charging more than that, you can do better with a local card.

Think Diamond: Diamond offers Platinum MasterCards with low rates and no annual fee. Apply for your Diamond Platinum MasterCard today!

Staying Connected

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Diamond’s Blog shares financial information on money issues, advances in money management, how to protect your finances, and sometimes just plain fun stuff!

Helping young adults build responsible, successful futures…That’s younity!