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Posted 27 April 2023

Tips for Maintaining International Student Accounts

Establishing a checking or savings account in the U.S. creates financial opportunity, offering a way for you to easily access your money, pay your bills, receive funds from your university or family abroad, and make everyday purchases. However, there might be more to managing your account than you think. Once your account has been opened, it will be important to stay in regular communication with your credit union or bank since they are required to keep up-to-date residency documents and other records on file. Let’s go over some tips for maintaining your international student account.

TIP: Check your contact information.

Your financial institution may periodically reach out to request that you provide updated residency documents or fill out necessary forms. To ensure you receive their communication, be sure to regularly review your contact information. The email address on file should be one you consistently check. You will also want to provide a U.S. phone number as an additional form of contact.

If you move and your physical address changes — such as moving from a dorm room to an apartment — be sure to notify your credit union or bank so your information can be updated. Depending on your financial institution, you might also be able to do this yourself using their online banking services or mobile app. When opening your account, be sure to inquire about these features.

TIP: Regularly check your messages.

Part of being financially responsible is remaining aware. Look out for voicemails, e-messages, or emails from your financial institution and respond diligently. Be sure to follow up in a timely fashion, especially if residency documents are required. Before responding to any email or phone correspondence, pause to consider if the request makes sense, checking for fraud. Don’t forget, some scammers may pose as your financial institution in an attempt to steal your account or other personal information. For this reason, be wary of emails or calls that:

  • are unexpected and ask for your account information.
  • create a sense of urgency or use scare
  • include links or attachments.
  • offer a prize you didn’t enter to win.
  • include spelling and grammatical errors.

If you ever struggle to determine if outreach is fraudulent, contact your credit union or bank.

TIP: Take the initiative.

You don’t have to wait for your financial institution to reach out to you to make a change. If your visa has been extended, your residency status has changed, or you have any questions regarding your account, contact your credit union or bank. This will provide them with the opportunity to request any additional documents they may require or recommend products or services that assist with your financial goals. Being proactive can help you avoid potentially frustrating situations and can equip you with the financial knowledge you need to make wise money decisions. 


©2023 Reseda Group LLC, used under license.