With a little forward planning you can enjoy your time in College on a comfortable budget. Here are some top money management tips.
Create a budget
There are several ways you can draw up a budget. Firstly the old fashioned way by writing it down on a notepad, typing it into an Excel spreadsheet or using one of the money management apps available. Whatever method you choose for drawing up a budget, you’ll want to work out how much income you have on an ongoing basis and how much is left over once the necessary expenses, like rent, transportation costs and food are taken out. With the left over money you can put it towards fun things like trips to the movies with your friends.
Open a bank account
It’s wise to also open a bank account with one of the financial institutions near you. As you’re a student, most banks will offer college students accounts waving ATM/Monthly fees (do your research).
Cook your meals at home
It might be tempting to take the easy route and opt for takeout meals, but the cost of convenience can quickly add up. A smart idea is to do weekly shopping and food prepping. Take some time out that works for your schedule and prepare some meals in advance. Pick-up some plastic containers and store your prepared meals. Then pop something in the microwave and your done!
Buy second hand
Whether it’s a couch for your apartment, textbooks for class or even some new clothes, buying items second hand is bound to save you a nice sum of cash. Pay attention to local garage sales, flee markets and yes Goodwill! You will be surprised the great household and clothing options available at local Goodwill and Thrift Stores.