Helpful Budgeting Practices For College Students
During your college years, you'll ideally receive not only the proper education in the academic field of your choice but also a whole host of important lessons in how the world works. More specifically, you will hopefully be prepared with an education that nets you gainful employment and the essential day-to-day life skills that allow you to live as a successful and informed adult.
This time in your life is an excellent opportunity for you to begin learning how to manage your money properly, develop sensible spending practices and build up the credit that will be necessary for major purchases later in life, such as your own home and vehicle. Smart spending must begin with smart budgeting - a viable plan for how to spend your money in a manner that's most beneficial to you.
Start by knowing exactly how much money you have from assorted sources and plan out what you'll need to buy over the coming weeks and months.
Try to minimize inessential expenses as much as possible. For example, save the money you're considering dropping on a concert ticket for your favorite band for a required textbook purchase. Also, don't forget that all the little charges you make - coffee in the morning, public transportation, et. al. - add up to a lot over time. Use your best judgment to determine whether you really need that seven-dollar sandwich for lunch every day or if you can buy groceries and make your own lunches.
If you choose to incorporate a student credit card into your college spending habits, you must be mindful of the fine line you occasionally walk by doing so. Building credit through plastic purchases at a young age is beneficial so long as you make timely, well-sized payments each month. Unwise credit card spending can damage your financial standing on a short- and long-term basis.
What other ways could you trim expenses as a college student?