One of the aspects of student life that people struggle with the most is money management. For many people, this will be their first time budgeting, paying rent, buying their own food and funding their own non-essential spending, which can be a huge culture shock for many.
A student loan will only take you so far, so what are a few ways to make savings as a student?
Living at Home
For many people, the student experience is about leaving home and gaining independence, so it is understandable if this is not for everyone. For those looking to make significant savings that are attending uni near where their family home is (and/or those not fussed about the “uni experience”), living at home would help you to make huge savings on rent and bills (you might even have dinner waiting for you when you get home too!).
The best step to take at the start of each term is to draw up a budget, which will help you to control your spending. You should divide essential spending like rent, bills, food travel etc. by the number of weeks that you have and then what you have leftover will be your non-essential spending (you may also want to divide this so that you don’t blow it all on week one!).
Get a Part-Time Job
It will not work for all but getting a part-time job can give you a significant financial boost each month and could allow you a more enjoyable lifestyle at uni. It is important to find something flexible and a job that will not interfere with your studies. If you are not able to take on a part-time job but you are struggling to make ends meet, you could look into loans for students to tide you over until the next loan payment comes in.
It is amazing just how many places offer student discounts, so it is always worth doing some research to see how you could be making savings. Often, you can get generous discounts on clothes stores, food outlets, travel, gym memberships and much more.
Cook Your Own Meals
Students stereotypically have a terrible diet, but this does not have to be your experience. Making home-cooked meals as opposed to takeaways, microwaveable meals and oven pizzas will not only be better for your health but will also help you to make big savings. You should look into batch cooking meals and/or taking it in turn to cook as a household.
These financial tips will hopefully help you to make savings while still making the most out of the uni experience without having to worry about making ends meet at the end of term.