Financial Tips for Students

This blog post is short and sweet, but consists of a list of financial tips for students that I choose to follow and hope you will think about as well. As usual this isn’t an exhaustive list, and it’s not something that you need to swear by. But it’s a list that is meant to make you think. Am I making the right choices with my money? Am I prepared for all the expenses of the school year?

If there’s anything you feel is missing or off the mark feel free to leave a comment on this post. If it’s an awesome tip I will definitely add it to the list.

1. Be conscious of the debt you have. Keep track of your student loans, lines of credit and credit card bills.
2. Always save, keep money stockpiled in case of emergency.
3. Coffee and food purchases at the cafeteria at school pile up.
4. Keep track of what you’re spending-the more conscious you are of your spending habits, the more likely you are to fix them and try and spend less.
5. Make expenses aside from tuition as low as possible. That includes rent, cable/internet, food, “entertainment”
6. Spend cash when you can. Take out what you need and don’t bring your debit card along. Debit cards make spending much easier, only when you check your statements do you actually realize how much you spent. It tends to pile up pretty quickly. aka try to avoid starting a bar tab when you go out.

7. Find ways to get rewards for purchases. Ie. Air Miles Mastercards, PC point Debit Cards (for groceries) etc. These can add up to extra benefits and save you some cash. Why not get benefits from the purchases you already make?

8. Always pay off your credit card balance in full! Not just the minimum payment. You probably already have student debt, try not to add any further debt on top of that.
9. Come up with a student loan repayment plan. How much do you already owe? What do you estimate you will owe by the end of school?
10. Set your educational and career goals. Do you want to travel? Can you afford going to grad school right away?
11.Never buy if you don’t have to. Borrow from friends. Sharing is caring. This is always good when it comes to textbooks an unfortunately very large investment unless you put the effort in.

Additional Reader Tips

  • Try to get as much free entertainment as possible. Have a BYOB board game night or poker tourney using snacks as betting chips. Look into free concerts at the school; often in the faculty of music but also young artists starting out nearby. Try karaoke, or a trivia night at a local pub (with a strict drinks/food budget). Look for film screenings in the area or at the library.
  • Many schools have course books on short-term loan at the library. If you are diligent enough to not leave a semester of reading to the last week you can avoid buying the book all together. Especially for books that are only needed for homework questions (ie math, physics etc). I photocopied the pages I needed. Also think about sharing a book with a roommate or trusted friend.
Tips via Twitter
@NewGradeLife Start Saving as soon as you can and let the nest egg grow!  
@lyss090 Load up a store gift card card and set a time frame to reloading it. Eg, #Starbucks – $10/month on the 1st of every month. 

  • @CheapStudents additional notes for @lyssa090’s tip-Make sure to only put that amount on, use it as a way to limit your purchases to that certain amount per month at that establishment and not use any other form of payment to make purchases at that store.
What are rules that you live by when it comes to your finances?

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  • Mp

    2 things to add to this list:
    -Try to get as much free entertainment as possible. Have a BYOB board game night or poker tourney using snacks as betting chips. Look into free concerts at the school; often in the faculty of music but also young artists starting out nearby. Try karaoke, or a trivia night at a local pub (with a strict drinks/food budget). Look for film screenings in the area or at the library.
    -Many schools have course books on short-term loan at the library. If you are diligent enough to not leave a semester of reading to the last week you can avoid buying the book all together. Especially for books that are only needed for homework questions (ie math, physics etc). I photocopied the pages I needed. Also think about sharing a book with a roommate or trusted friend.
    (PS: In your title and in the body of the text you incorrectly added an apostrophe to a plural noun. Should be “students” and “ways”)

    • Thanks Mp for the extra tips. They have been added to the post! Also I’ve fixed the grammar errors you pointed out. Thanks again.