College students have to juggle using their limited resources to cover crucial costs like food, tuition, accommodation, and having money set aside for fun and comfort. Of course, there is no denying that most students struggle financially.
According to research, 38% of college dropouts – an immense majority – report having to terminate their studies because of financial pressure. This article summarizes tips for college students on how to survive on a shoestring budget.
- Create and Follow a Budget
Budgeting allows you to meet your academic and financial goals when working with limited finances. You get to understand how much you have to spend and the pressing needs that ought to be prioritized.
In this sense, a budget is a guide that allows you to stay on the right path toward your financial goals. With a reasonable budget, you can determine where to make adjustments. You also get to choose where your money goes and plan for unexpected expenses.
The first step in creating a budget for college is writing down your financial goals. What objectives would you like to achieve in the short and long-term? For instance, if you want to save for a trip overseas, indicate this in your budget.
You will also need to outline your sources of income. How much money do you have to work with? Once you have determined your finances, create a priority list of your expenditures. Make sure to set aside funds for emergencies.
- Make Use of Your Student Identification
College students love discounts as they allow them to afford things without straining their finances. According to a recent survey, brands that offer discounts make considerable differences in students purchasing decisions. Your student identification allows you to access many facilities beyond the college campus.
However, before making any purchase, compare offers and discounts. You can use student identification to save money on transport and accommodation during trips, buy electronics, and order books online.
- Consider Getting a Job
One of the easiest ways to survive college if your finances are tight is by making extra ey. Getting a job in college comes with numerous benefits, including the chance to improve your resume and build experience. You also make money that can help offset some of your college costs in the process. Most importantly, the skills you gain when working part-time will make you more attractive to future employers.
When working part-time, make sure always to prioritize your studies. The main reason you are in college is to fulfill your academic obligations. Please make time to attend classes and submit your assignments before they are due. Most importantly, work on your time-management skills, and do not hesitate to seek assistance if you feel overwhelmed. If needed, hire a professional essay writer to help with some of your tasks.
- Start a Savings Culture
College is the best place to start saving money, even if you work with a shoestring budget. When budgeting, consider setting aside some funds for your savings account.
This gets you into a savings habit early and allows you to develop habits that could be crucial later in your life. Saving money now also helps you build trust in your abilities, allowing you to take control of your future.
- Use Credit Cards Wisely
A vital money management insight students need for college is the wise use of credit cards. When working with limited funds, credit cards expand your purchasing power and allows you to pay for necessary items and services. However, it would help if you were cautious to avoid getting into credit card debt that could burden your financial future.
- Be Smart When Taking Loans
Most students need loans to help them afford college. Loans can help you pay for rent, books, and food. While loans can be instrumental in your academic journey, you need to avoid getting into unnecessary debt.
Instead of missing necessary payments, be smart about your loans, and live within your means. Remember that you will need to pay back all the loans you take as a college student. So avoid spending student loans on non-pressing wants.
- Prepare Your Meals
Your mental and physical health in college will depend on your dietary habits. It is important to eat balanced meals regularly to have the energy needed to keep up with busy campus schedules. However, most students know that the cost of healthy and nutritious food can be high. A secret to keeping meals exciting and healthy is by cooking the food.
By eating out less, students get to choose healthier options while also making huge savings. Of course, you can set aside funds to go out with friends occasionally. However, prepare your meals and take control of what you eat.
This article summarizes a few tips on surviving college when working with a shoestring budget. Consider creating the following budget and be smart when taking student loans. You may also benefit from having a roommate with whom you share costs.