How to save money as a student in troubling times
It can be really tempting to spend all your money on things you want and not need as well as spending it all at once. However, that is the thing you don't want to do! It is important to prioritise and budget your money as it can give you a lot of benefits. The student finance you receive can be appropriately managed by budgeting it. Money can be tricky to manage due to the uncertainty of certain situations. However, it can be good to do that as the change of financial freedom that you get thrown into when starting university comes with a responsibility. Budgeting and money management can be boring to do, but learning about it is important as it will be useful to you for the rest of your life.
Money management advice
Consider what you spend your money on and be aware of how much you're spending on it. The living crisis that is happening right now, that is greatly affecting students, means that it will be much more important to budget your money. There are spreadsheets or planners all over the internet that let you have a template for money management. The first thing you should start with is adding up money from student loans, grants, money from parents or carers and any savings you might have. Then finding what you have to spend it on, consider things such as your accommodation (which might include rent and bills), travel, food and any money that goes from your account for important or everyday things. From this you will know how much money you have left for things such as clothes, equipment, supplies etc. This helps you with planning your weekly budget which will show you how much money you can spend in that week. Here are some money saving tips you can use.
Student Discounts are offers and savings that are provided by companies for students. There are many apps and discounts for students that can be useful. They can be used for food, clothes, electronics, fitness etc. This will help you with spending less money and don't be afraid to use as it is especially made for you to utilise. This will be beneficial in the long run as you can use the money you saved for something else. This is a quote from a Ted Talk:
"There's ways to save money on all your favourite brands that you buy everyday..... By using coupons, loyalty schemes, mobile apps, and cashback sites".
This explains how you can use the discounts to your advantage which is a great way of saving money as a student.
Another useful tip is for you to make a list of the things you need and another list for what you want. To make sure you're making the right decisions about spending you should prioritise the items that you need and then hold off on the items you want for now. Once you have set your weekly budget the items you need will be easy to plan out.
Also, having an account for everyday spendings and a separate one for savings is beneficial in budgeting. This is because you can set up how much money you have to spend in your account for a week so you are not tempted to buy things you don't need. Also, this is good for tracking the money you spend. Putting money into your savings account will be beneficial for certain emergencies.
There are side hustles that you can do in your spare time in between studies to earn more money. The first tip is to get a part time job which can be useful to have more income coming in to your account. The part time work can fit around your studies. As a student it is important to organise your time wisely and if you have time for a part time job it will improve your finances.
The second tip is to earn money from things you already own. One example is to sell your old clothes that you don't intend to wear anymore or you've grown out of. You can look through your wardrobe and pick out clothes you want to sell on websites or apps such as Depop or Vinted which will help you to clear out your wardrobe, gain money and buy new clothes.
To conclude, these tips for student budgeting will help you to budget and save money. This can be important to do at the start of the year to be consistent with your spending habits. It can be hard to adjust to due to the sudden financial independence. However, it feels great to do and will save you a lot of stress in the future.