Managing Money in College
Whether we like it or not, money plays an important role in our lives, and when it comes to being in college, it’s something that we often don’t have a lot of. That’s why I wanted to provide you guys with a few tips and tricks concerning money management in college. After three years I think I’ve finally conquered good money management. I’ve discovered how to manage my income in a way that allows me to spend money and also save it at the same time while in school.
Get a Job
The best way to retain money is to get a job. Personally, I think an on-campus job is your best bet. Class schedules can be tricky in college and can vary each day. Additionally, heavy workloads can make working 20+ hours a week difficult. An on-campus job will work around your class schedule, especially at Concordia, and sometimes they won’t require students to work during finals. The staff is also understanding about breaks and allow for their workers to have time off. The only significant downside is that they often are limited to a minimum wage pay. So, if you’re looking for something to bring in a little more cash an on-campus job might not work out well. Additionally, don’t wait to apply for them. Most departments want underclassmen workers so that they can train them and retain them for the duration of their time at college.
Know when to Say No
After getting a job, know when to say no. It’s going to be tempting to go out every weekend, but just remember that there’ll always be another weekend. I put away part of my paycheck to save up for special occasions like birthdays or celebrations. That way I have money for these events and am still putting money away to pay for college the next year. Additionally, don’t be afraid to suggest staying in with your friends. Watching a movie and making popcorn can be just as much fun as going to a movie theatre, and it’s not hard to find friends who also want to save money.
Be thrifty when you do go out or make purchases on sale. Trust me, thrifting is essentially for college living. Look for off-brand food, clothes, soaps, shampoos, etc. I’ve found that they can be just as effective and taste just as good as an “on-brand” option, and nobody will think less of you. They’re trying to save money too! If you move off-campus at any point in your college career buying food cheaply will be your best friend. Meal planning is also vital because it keeps you from buying food that you won’t eat.
Being thrifty goes alongside those coffee addictions so many of us have. Invest in a coffee pot. Trust me, they’ll be super helpful and keep you from spending $6.00 everyday at Starbucks or Scooters. Honestly, anything that you find yourself paying daily for now, try to find a way to minimize your use or invest in something that will be cheaper in the long run.
And there’s my quick tips on saving money in college. It may not seem like a lot, but it can go a long way. Good luck!