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February 7 2017

How to be less of a Broke College Student… By a Broke College Student

 

 Ahhhh, college. The best four (or more) year of your life. This a time in your life where you get to prepare yourself for real world problems. I was so excited for this; for finally being able to “adult.” Moving to Rutgers was amazing, I have my own apartment, and no one is telling me what to do or when to do it. I’m not hounded to clean my room, or to get to bed at a decent hour, it’s literally the best. Kinda forgot one thing though; MONEY. How the hell am I expected to pay for food, clothes, gas, car insurance, etc. while taking six classes a semester, I barely have time to breathe. I guess “adulting” isn’t all that great, whoops. Here’s a few tips that I’ve learned (and TRY to do) to keep yourself a little less broke during the school year.

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GET A JOB

This may seem so obvious and simple, but SO many people use the excuse “I don’t have time” when trying to make excuses for not working. It’s not that hard to balance a job! I am in six classes, and work at a law firm two days a week, and let me tell you, that extra money makes a HUGE difference. Get a job working one night a week at a restaurant. Find a job where you can work in the school. It doesn’t have to be extremely time consuming, but trust me, a few extra bucks a week is going to help you so much more than you think. Plus, you never know where these jobs may take you, or who you might meet.

SET A DAILY BUDGET

This is something that has really helped me the past couple of months. Give yourself a daily limit, to something like $10 a day, and STICK TO IT. Doing so will allow you to plan your monthly budget at well, and figure out how much money you’d need per month to get by. It only works if you stick to it, though!

IT’S OKAY TO SAY NO

One of the biggest things that I struggled with as a newly “adult” is saying no to people. I think I got asked to go grab food at least once a day, and I went literally every single time. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize how much it added up. I ended up spending around $50-$80 a week just on food and entertainment! It’s okay to say no when people ask you to go out! Instead, maybe offer to have a movie night at your apartment, or see if they’d want to catch up on homework with you. COOK IN YOUR HOUSE. It saves so much money, and it’s fun to cook with your friends! There’s so many more things to do that don’t require breaking the bank! Especially on a college campus!

REWARD YOURELF

Although I cannot stress enough the use of a budget, and being frugal during your college years, it is also very important to save some money to reward yourself every once in a while! Save up money every couple of weeks to get your nails done, or splurge on a nice dinner with friends, or go see a movie. College is extremely stressful, so even though saving is super important, so is your mental health!

Overall, college is going to be the best time of your life, but can be super stressful. Hopefully these are a few ways to keep you from breaking the bank, and adding another level of stress onto your already hectic life. Doing these things will allow you to budget yourself so that you will not be worried about checking your bank account balance every time you use your debit card!

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