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Inside: The four principles of finance

A student guide to navigating the financial world




Becoming a student can be challenging, in a multitude of ways. It is the best years of your life, but also the most testing, especially when it comes to managing your finances. It is important to be prepared for what to expect when it comes to the four principles of finance: income, savings, spending and investment.



Income


When it comes to student loans, everyone is different. Different amounts depending on the financial status of your caregivers, and different methods of receiving them. Some students get a job to provide an extra income, some students don't apply for a student finance loan at all. The important thing to remember is you have to manage your income in the right way, that best suits you.


One of the best ways to manage your student income is to set it aside in a student bank account, set up separately to any other personal bank accounts. This way, you can focus on using this income for necessities such as food and hygiene products. If you get a job as a student or have any other income besides a loan, such as an allowance, perhaps think about setting aside this income into a different personal account. It might be an idea to use this income to spend on extra items you might want to buy - like that jacket you have wanted for ages but don't necessarily need! This is a good method of beginning to save your student loan, by using it to purchase necessities, which leads us on to the next financial principle: savings.



Savings

During your student years, the concept of saving can seem to go out the window! However, it is important to consider small ways of saving whilst at university.

Whilst you might have other bigger savings elsewhere, for future investments such as a house, or a car, small savings can also go a long way into achieving these longer term goals. Here are three tips for saving money at university.

  • Use budget planners - Give yourself a weekly budget for food shops and other necessities.

  • Railcards - Make sure you have a railcard, these are a huge money saving hack for those train journeys between home and university!

  • Student discounts - Make sure you always apply student discounts at checkout! Carry your student card with you for in-store discounts in many shops.


Spending

It is important to maintain a healthy balance between your student social life, and spending habits. The student life can require a lot of spending when it comes to going out, and enjoying the nightlife. This aspect of university should be welcomed, as it's hugely important to remember to have fun at university and make memories that will last when you graduate into the world of working. However, supermarket expenses must be considered amongst your social life.

The point here is, make sure that you build a strong relationship between handling your income so that you look after yourself, but also have fun! A balance is the key to financial stability at university.



Investments


Investments might be something you already have, or are looking to make in the future. It is important to make sure you become clued up on the best investments for your future whilst at university.


Think towards your future financial goals. Maybe you want to move out and start looking to rent or buy a house after you graduate, or maybe you want to save and make smaller investments for the time being.


Either way, consider which investments will help you best achieve your long term goals after your student life. The tips given in the previous sections will assist you in saving to be able to achieve these future investments!












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