There will be hardly anyone who does not face financial hardships. Whether you are a wealthy businessman or have a high-powered job, monetary issues are always tormenting, but you suffer extreme difficulty managing finances when you are a student. You have to attend your classes, but you also have to do a part-time job to make your ends meet.
Grappling with finances is a widespread phenomenon when you are a student. It happens because you are to live off the meagre income, but now is the best time to educate yourself about money management. Here is how you can manage your finances and save some money.
Start with budgeting
Whether you like it or not, budgeting provides for the foundation of financial management. It gives you a clear idea of what you have, what you want to spend, and what you need to save. Since you will know how much money is going and where you can easily take stock of your spending to make sure that you are not overspending.
Even if your parents are funding your expenses, you should create a budget. It will develop a habit of planning your purchases and tracking your expenses. Most of the students feel it boring and tedious and hence do not prefer budgeting. Just because it is time-consuming, it does not mean that you will underestimate it.
When it comes to budgeting, the first thing you need to do is calculate all essential expenses like rent, college fees, food, etc. Since these are fixed costs, there is no wiggle room. The next step is to take stock of discretionary expenses. As your wants drive them, you can cut back on them. The more you cut down on, the more savings you will have. However, it does not mean that you do not need to leave a little room for entertainment or dine out.
Set a saving goal
Budgeting leads to savings, no doubt, but you will have to set a realistic saving goal. Emergencies can catch you on the wrong foot, so make sure you have enough money to deal with them. You may need to contribute additional funds to your research project, or your laptop may need a repair. Such unexpected expenses can pop up anytime. They will add up the financial burden, but it can ease if you have had stashed away some money.
Start with setting realistic goals. Make short-term goals like building an emergency cushion for three months worth of living cost. Open a savings account, link it to your paycheque account, and automate the transfer of 5 or 10% of your income. Treat it as your fixed expense and try to make do with the money you have left after setting aside. It can be hard to make with little money, but it will give you a sense of financial security.
Buy used books
One of the most significant expenses you will likely face is educational expenses. Books, coaching fees, projects quickly add up – a real pain in the neck. A smart approach can help you minimise these expenses. Instead of buying new books that cost around one-fourth of your income, you should buy second-hand books.
You can get used books from any book stores at half of the price. Some universities are also providing the facility of eBooks. If you have reached this opportunity, opt for this option. It will cost you a small registration fee only. At the end of the course, you can sell your books and notes that you made to prepare for your exams.
Hand-written or computer-typed notes are in high demand. You can make a few bucks by selling your notes and books. This is how you can save money on books and other materials.
Apply for scholarship
The tuition fee takes a large chunk out of your money, but scholarships can ease this burden. You should be on the lookout for scholarships provided by colleges and universities. Apply for them regardless you qualify or not. Even though you get the opportunity to apply for small scholarships, do not miss the chance. Whatever the amount you win, it will be a tremendous financial support.
Look for cheap accommodation
Another significant expenditure that eats up your budget is accommodation. It is useful if you can get housing on campus. You can save money and get a full college experience. Otherwise, you can rent a flat nearby.
In the neighbourhood, you will get several rooms at affordable prices. Further, it will help you save money on travelling. The shorter the gap between your campus and accommodation, the better it is. You can also share a room with your friend to divide the cost.
Use credit cards wisely
Even though you make a strict budget and build an emergency cushion, you are likely to face a cash shortfall. When it is urgent to meet expenses, you lunge at your credit card. Credit card deals can cost you more than you expected because their interest rates are higher than short-term loans. You should take out instead of student payday loans for unemployed. Use these funding sources only when there is an emergency. Make sure that you do not borrow money to fund your discretionary expenses.
Handing finances and saving money as a student is undoubtedly hard. However, you can still manage to do it by choosing cheaper accommodation, applying for scholarships, buying used books, sharing a room, creating a budget, and tracking expenses.
Description: Are you facing difficulty managing your finances as a student? Read this blog. It discusses how you can do it.