If you are heading to college, you’ll be excited about meeting new friends and starting with an independent lifestyle studying an exciting subject. College, however, can work out expensive, so how do you make plans to pay the bills, have fun, and pass your exams without ending up broke. Here’s how to finance college without going broke.
1. Save Before You Arrive In College
One of the best ways to plan for college is to save as much money as possible before you start studying. You’ll have some funds available for emergencies and the occasional treat by setting money aside.
Get a part-time job so you earn and can save for college. You’ll also gain life skills and work experience, which helps when you start applying for jobs after college. Some colleges also have part-time work on campus or in the neighborhood to help you get more money while studying.
2. Declutter Your Belongings
Another way to raise funds for that emergency fund is to declutter your room or apartment and sell anything you no longer require. It helps when you move to college as you’ll have more condensed belongings, but you’ll also have money set aside when you need it, such as in an emergency or unexpected bills.
3. Set A Budget And Stick To It
When you start at college, there’s a lot to get organized, from finding somewhere to live to buying textbooks and other equipment. It is also when you will have money either from personal loans, student loan refinancing, or savings.
Initially, it will appear that you have a lot of money in your bank account for the first time, and it is tempting to spend it on items and treats. However, this is precisely the time you need to stay focused and stick to a budget.
Work out how much money you have and how long it needs to last you. Next, try to calculate what your spending is likely to be on things like rent, food, and bills. Finally, make sure you set some aside for unexpected expenses.
You should now be able to work out how much you have each month and can adjust your living style to manage within the budget. You will find it easier to manage your finances and not go broke by sticking to your monthly budget.
4. Consider Student Loans
College degrees take several years to complete, so plan ahead. For example, medical school student loan refinancing can get you through those long years of training to be a doctor, and there are reasonable interest rates.
Using a company specializing in student loan refinancing is recommended as they have insights into the needs of students and the issues they face.
5. Learn To Cook
Food can end up being one of your most significant expenses. It is also vital that you eat nutritious food to stay healthy when studying. Learn to cook from scratch using basic ingredients and fresh food. You’ll save by not eating out or buying hyper-processed food and be healthier for it- as will your wallet.
And by using leftovers from dinner as a packed lunch, you’ll avoid buying expensive food in cafes.
6. Be Wary Of Strangers And Scams
At college, you’ll find genuinely friendly people, and many turn out to be friends for life. However, not everyone has authentic friendship in mind. When you enter college and are still getting to know people, be wary about talking about your finances, loaning people money, and keeping your bank card and online banking details secure.
Never reveal your passwords to anyone, regardless of how friendly they are.
Be vigilant for online, email, and phone scams which are very common around the start of college when scammers know students have money in their accounts.
Don’t click on unusual links in emails, and be wary of phishing sites or schemes that sound too good to be true.
7. Don’t Forget To Have Fun
College is a special time when you’ll do a lot of studying and make new friends. Although you’ll be living on a budget and having to watch the dollars, don’t forget to have fun. There are alternatives to expensive parties and vacations, such as free events or sharing costs with other students. It would be a pity to miss out on college life by not joining in some fun and socializing. So, although you have a budget to stick to, remember to enjoy yourself.
When you go to college, it is an exciting time with a lot to look forward to in this new chapter in your life. So, organize your finances, work out your expenses, and make plans to study and socialize – and stick to your budget. Then, you’ll have a great time and succeed with your college degree without going broke.