Money in America

A financial guide for immigrants living in the U.S.

Moving to a new country can be equally exciting and challenging. Along with a new culture and customs, there’s also a different financial system to navigate. NerdWallet can help as you build a life in the U.S. — whether it’s opening a bank account, buying a car, paying for college or starting a business. Click on a link below for stories and tips for all phases of your financial life.

Money Basics

How One Immigrant Started Her Financial Journey in the U.S.

One Immigrant’s Financial Journey

Advice for finding your financial footing in the the U.S. from someone who’s done the same

How to Establish Credit

How to Build Credit, Avoid Debt

Learn how to go from no credit to good credit (and why it’s important)

ACH transfers send money online

How to Wire Money

Everything you need to know to send money

Rules Are Murky for Moving Up From a Secured Credit Card, Study Finds

Credit Cards 101

A primer on credit cards in the U.S.

Banking, Credit Cards and Money Transfers

How to Apply for a Credit Card Without a Social Security Number

How to Apply for a Credit Card Without a Social Security Number

There are other numbers that can be used instead

World First money transfer

Compare Money Transfer Rates

Avoid high fees when sending money abroad

3 Costly Mistakes When Sending Money Online

Best Ways to Wire Money Internationally

NerdWallet’s top picks for transfers

What is a Checking Account?

The Basics of Checking Accounts

Learn about terms, fees and options

How Undocumented Immigrants Can Get Bank Accounts Story


Finding a Place to Live

How Much House Can You Afford?

How Much House Can You Afford?

Find the answer using NerdWallet’s home affordability calculator

Best Renters Insurance for College Students

What You Need to Rent an Apartment

NerdWallet’s guide to getting an apartment

apartment for rent

Renting an Apartment Without Credit

How to put a roof over your head before you establish a credit history

First-Time Homebuyer: Researching Your New Neighborhood

25 Tips for First-Time Home Buyers

Read this before shopping for a home

4 Must-Ask Questions When Choosing a Mortgage Broker

Finding the Best Mortgage Lenders

Tips to find the best rates and terms

Buying a Car, Driving and Insurance

When Do You Need a New Driver’s License?

Getting a Driver’s License

Learn when and how to get a driver’s license

Used Cars Can Save You Money on Auto Insurance Quotes

How to Buy a Used Car

A step-by-step guide for shoppers

accident forgiveness auto insurance quotes

How to Buy Car Insurance

Protect your vehicle and yourself with the right amount of coverage

undocumented immigrants drivers licenses california

How Undocumented Immigrants Can Get Car Insurance

Tips to insure your car if you’re not documented

Going to College

11 Tips for Undocumented Students Applying to College

Applying to College as an Undocumented Student

Tips to navigate applications and admissions

FAFSA Tool Outage: Students It Affects Most and How to Cope

Filing out the FAFSA: Undocumented Immigrants

The first step to qualify for in-state tuition, scholarships, other aid

Will a huge amount of student loan debt hurt my credit?

FAFSA Guide: When Your Parents are Undocumented

How to apply for financial aid when your parents aren’t citizens


8 Scholarships for Hispanic Students

Find free money to help pay for college

Starting a Business

How to Start a Business

How to Start a Business

A step-by-step guide for entrepreneurs

How to Qualify for Small-Business Loans

Qualifying for a Small-Business Loan

Read this to learn how to get cash to start or grow your business

How to Write a Business Plan: A Step-by-Step Guide

How to Write a Business Plan

Turn your dream into a reality with a strong, clear road map


Get a Business License

Learn about required permits and paperwork

Additional Resources