Every year in September, millions of students return to school following the summer break from studying. It is when students get back into the classrooms, return to a regular schedule, work on and learn new skills that will serve a purpose later in life.
The back to school season can be exhilarating as well as exhausting, but the extreme emotions are definitely felt most strongly by college and university students. For many undergrads, post-secondary school is their first experience living on their own, which means all the responsibilities, the headaches, and the expenses that come with independence.
Itâ€™s hard to imagine how trying independent living at school can be on the mind, on the bodyâ€™s health, and especially on the wallet. Everything costs money and as a student, there is little money to spare beyond the bare necessities to keep a roof over the head while attending classes.
Learning how to maintain a budget can also be challenging. There is no go to checklist to teach how to manage money as everyoneâ€™s experiences and expenses are unique. But there are some clever money management guides for students that offer helpful advice on living a frugal lifestyle using creative designs.
Some of the most basic tips to save money at school have to do with food. Making meals at home and limiting, if not entirely eliminating the budget for eating out can help keep a little extra money in the bank for emergency purposes.
For students that plan to use credit cards, the best advice is to acquire a plan with no annual fee and a very low interest rate. This way any purchases charged to the credit card will not accumulate high extra charges if the balance is unable to be paid off. But all students should make silent promises to pay off their entire credit card balances in full each month, avoiding all interest penalties altogether.
It can be tough living independently, especially for the first time. But by following a few basic budgeting tips, the cost of independence is a much more affordable price to pay.
Photo by Tulane Public Relations