5 Basic Money Saving Tips for College Students
With so many college students heading off to school annually, you would think that the world would get smarter each time around. Still, the same financial mistakes seem to follow college students every single year. The mistakes may vary a bit, but the poor principles behind those mistakes remain the same. College students are smart by definition, so what gives?
Chances are, it is the fact that they are not educated in the basics and warned of the mistakes in thinking that lead to poor financial management. Perhaps too many of them are supported entirely by their parents. Whatever the case, they could all benefit from adopting five basic principles of financial intelligence.
Here are 5 simple money saving tips for college students that could change college economics forever:
Adopt the “used is better” philosophy
From new cars to the latest in fashion, used is almost always going to be better than new for college students. In college, you really only need to have the minimums to get by and it will lead you to make better decisions down the road. Entering college and buying everything new leads you to think that you get the prize before the contest. Life doesn’t work that way. Buy a used car and learn to work on it. Buy a second hand skirt and rock a new style of your own. Buy used textbooks and sell them at a profit online when you finish with them or donate them to a needy student.
See how these decisions are better?
Take advantage of campus entertainment
There is a reason that campus officials and volunteers spend tons of resources and time on providing inexpensive options to college students. It is because they stand to benefit when the students get involved on campus. It is also because students will save their money and spend it on the things they are supposed to…books, tuition and college life. Going out and spending tons of cash on entertainment is likely only going to lead you to trouble.
Consider being an RA or Tutor
Resident advisors and tutors are going to benefit in several ways. One, they will be helping their fellow students and learning about leadership. Two, they will be earning free room and board in some cases. Three, they will be immersing themselves in the very things that college are supposed to be about….college life and learning. All of these things are good both in life and financially.
Take your time finding a roommate
There are things worse than not being able to find a roommate believe it or not. Having the “wrong” roommate is a perfect example that comes to mind. When you pick your roommate, you need to be certain they are going to hold up their end both fiscally and socially. They can make your life hell on earth so choose carefully and don’t be too quick to pick.
Commit to no vices
Vices cost college students more money than any other expense. Sometimes that cost is direct and sometimes it is indirect, but both can be equally devastating. Whether you are a heavy smoker that kills a five dollar a pack habit a day, or you are an alcoholic that drinks constantly and ends up with a DUI, the cost can be horrendous. Not only are vices incredibly bad for you, they are also expensive. What would you think it would cost to lose your health, your pride and your college education? Consider adopting a “no vices” attitude for college and you will be ahead of the vast majority out of the gate.
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