college-students

There are many things that make college some of the best years of your life. Financial freedom is not one of them. Instead of sacrificing all of those fun nights out with your friends, learn to save and spend your money wisely! Check out this article I found on NerdWallet that gives tips and tricks to students looking to live up their college years without racking up the debt.

Need Extra Cash?

1. Fill out online scholarships
Take advantage of scholarships offered online through websites like Collegescholarships.com and Fastweb.com. With a wide range of topics and categories, it’s likely you’ll find a couple that intrigue you.

2. Look into becoming an RA
Most college dorms offer RA programs that let you subsidize your housing cost, make some extra cash, or both.

3. On-campus jobs
On-campus jobs might include working the front desk at your campus gym or working in the cafeteria. The commitment is usually lower than off-campus jobs and as far as convenience goes, you can’t beat that location!

5. Nanny
If you don’t know any families nearby, you can find open positions through a website like Care.com.

6. Tutor
If babysitting isn’t your forte, you can check out Craigslist or other websites to find families eager for a college student to tutor their budding prodigy.

7. Sell your stuff
If you’ve got things to buy, then you probably have things to sell. Make some extra cash by selling your old items on eBay and Craigslist. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!

 

Take Advantage of Being a Student

1. Use your student ID
Many retailers, movie theaters, and other everyday destinations offer student discounts when a valid student ID is presented.

2. Take advantage of other student discounts
There are easy-to-access student discounts for items that are not so daily as well. Apple, HP, and Dell are just some of the technology companies that offer student discounts on laptops, etc. Many airline companies also offer student rates on plane tickets and travel packages.

3. Free campus entertainment
Check out what kind of free events your campus offers to students. A lot of schools organize karaoke nights, movie nights, free concerts and other events free-of-charge for students looking to stay busy on the weekends. As an added bonus, this is a great way to expand your social circle and meet some people you might not otherwise come across.

4. Get involved
Look out for cultural events or special lectures around campus that include lunch or dinner. Save $10 and learn something new. It’s a win-win.

Get organized

1. Make lists
Bring lists with you whenever you go shopping and stick to them! That way, you don’t overspend on groceries or clothing.

2. Develop a weekly routine
Get a routine going to make you more efficient. This will cut down on how many loads of laundry you end up doing, along with other frequent tasks that cost you money.

3. Save those coupons!
Collecting coupons and frequent visitor punch cards is only helpful if you actually use them. Keep these things in sight so that you remember.

Get Money Smart!

1. Cut out bad habits
Get rid of bad habits that eat at your wallet like smoking and drinking. And get the added bonus of better health!

2. Evaluate your everyday expenses
Review the things you buy everyday like your morning coffee. Things that cost just $1 a day can add up over time. Look into cheaper options.

3. Make a budget for yourself
Keep track of your monthly expenses and income to stay within your limits. This will show you were those spending leaks are happening. Mint.com and other services are great expense trackers.

4. Re-evaluate your meal plan
If your campus uses a fixed-meal plan and you don’t eat much, then it’s probably not the best way to go. You can also try cooking on your own, as this is usually cheaper than the campus meal plan.

5. Get a bike
Instead of spending money on gas, car insurance and maintenance, invest $300 in a good bike. You’ll save money and get some exercise as well. And speaking of…

6. Lose the car
If it’s an option, leave your car behind completely to eliminate parking tickets and cut out auto expenses.

7. Stay alert
Saving money means protecting it too. Watch out for traps designed for naïve students like store credit cards. Tricky terms and conditions and complex interest rates can sneak up on you when you least expect it

Want More Ideas?

1. Expand your horizons
Check local listings for free festivals, museums, and art galleries nearby. During the summer, keep an eye out for outdoor concerts and farmers markets as well. Websites like funcheap.com list low-cost events in your area.

2. Groupon
Never underestimate group buying power! Groupon is a great way to snag discounts and find new, exciting events in your area. Try using Groupon Now (its mobile app) to avoid buying coupons you never use.

3. Share clothes with roommates
Save money by sharing clothes and/or trading with friends. Try organizing a clothing swap every quarter or semester.

4. Carpool
Take advantage of your close quarters and coordinate rides with friends.

5. Learn to love DIY projects
Pinterest and YouTube offer tons of tutorials and guides that help you learn how to make and do things yourself instead of spending money on them.

AND FINALLY…..

6. Be confident and be yourself!
Don’t worry about “keeping up” if all your friends are getting money from their parents and you’re not. Don’t worry about the latest fashions if you can’t afford it. Remember – you’re only a college student once and making memories is priceless.

 

For the full article….click here!

 

Until Next Time,

Jessica M.

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