College, whether a university or trade school, is a time to figure out who you are, what you want for your future and what path you want to take. Then, on top of everything else… there's the whole financial aspect of life you now need to start thinking about. You are officially entering adulthood, which means beginning to manage your own finances.
That can feel like a scary step, especially if you are working and studying at the same time! But it definitely doesn’t have to be! Once you are set up to understand how to manage your bank account, you will love the financial freedom that comes with it. Plus, you will be setting up your future self for success. So what are a few steps you can take to help save some cash while in school?
Make a Budget
If you haven’t already, start with a budget. Take a look at your transactions and figure out your spending patterns. There are a lot of apps out there to help get you started that are super user-friendly. Then, you can take what you earn and split it up, so you know how much you can spend for the weekend. Like a good old spreadsheet? No problem, we have you covered here as well.
Learn to Cook
Eating out can definitely eat up a budget. Learning to cook is not only a great way to save money but is always a great skill to have. Not to mention it can be fun to do with friends! TikTok has a ton of fun recipes to try out, even if all you have is a microwave and a tiny toaster oven. There are a lot of websites, like Budget Bytes, that help give some great ideas.
If you have a dining plan, make sure to use all of it as well to not waste any extra meals. While you are there, grab an apple or another snack to save for later.
Trust us, while a bowl of ramen is always going to be a cost saver, you are going to want some variety.
Attend Campus Events
Sign up for your school’s newsletter and follow them on social to see what is happening around your campus! There are a lot of free and fun events such as movie nights, market days, and more.
Plus, you will be the first to know of any fun contests that might even win you some extra cash.
Use Your Student ID Beyond Campus
From local business to nationwide, a lot of these will have student or local resident discounts. Always remember to ask!
From monthly music subscriptions to your cell phone bill or even a new laptop, a student discount can save some major cash.
Make Sure Your Accounts Work for You
Make sure your checking and savings accounts work for you. Look for accounts that offer no monthly service fees and no minimum balance needed. You also want to look for overdraft protection. Even if you are putting just a little in savings, it’s better than nothing. Make sure your savings account can build interest and allows deposits at any time as well.
Need some help? Our Financial Wellness team is here for you. Fill out the form below to be contacted, or stop by and say hi at our location at UNF.
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