How College Students Can Save Money

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How College Students Can Save Money

Back to school is only weeks away, and that means college will soon be back in session, too. Here are our ways college students can save, whether they're living in a dorm, an apartment, or at home with their parents.

Share Expenses 

If you have roommates or friends you live with, try to break shared bills and expenses up evenly. Either do a breakdown of the expenses so everyone pays a portion, or evenly disperse entire bills to be covered by specific people. No matter how you decide to do this, make sure you have an open and honest conversation with your roommates about paying bills fairly between everyone. 

Pay Bills on Time

This is another point to stress to yourself and roomies; always pay bills on time. If you don't, interest and late fees will be tacked on. It can also potentially hit your credit scores. Having late bills is one of the fastest ways to throw money away and hit your credit, so avoid it at all costs. 

If you're ever worried about not paying a bill on time, speak with the company in question and communicate your concern and willingness to do whatever it takes to stay in good standing with them. You just might be able to work out an extension on your due date or a payment plan. 

Use a Grocery List and Avoid Eating Out

Even if your dorm isn't equipped with ways to cook a full meal, stick to the campus meal offerings and food you can make in your dorm. 

Make your grocery list each week, with every meal in mind (such as knowing you'll have to eat at the dining hall for 2 – 3 meals a day) and stick to your list. The more often you shop off-list or eat a meal out, you're spending more than you need to.

This doesn't mean to avoid eating out ever; it just means to do so in moderation.

Buy Used Books

Along with making sure you don't spend a fortune on supplies by using things you already have (backpacks, calculators, etc.), buy used textbooks when you can. 

Used textbooks are typically a fraction of the cost of new ones. 

Make sure at the end of every semester, you return the textbooks to your college bookstore for money back or store credit — whichever your school offers. Use this cash on next semester's books. 

Avoid Credit Cards

Having a credit card may not be completely avoidable, but you need to use any you have with caution. Always talk to your parents before using a card that might be shared with them and never apply for any of the predatory credit cards advertised on your campus. Predatory lenders target college students with tempting terms and time allotments without interest, but there are always massive interest rates to be found in the fine print. 

Avoid using a credit card when you can and when you do, do so wisely. If you can't pay your bills without a credit card, chances are you need to reevaluate your income and expenditures.

Written by Josh Elledge - CEO, UpMyInfluence

Josh Elledge is U.S. Navy veteran and launched UpMyInfluence to help entrepreneurs like himself attract the perfect audiences and grow their authority and influence. While growing their better-than-PR agency, UpMyInfluence discovered that building 7-figure B2B Sales Systems (with zero paid advertising) for agencies, consultants, coaches, and other high-ticket B2B service providers is actually what they do better than anyone else on the planet.

UpMyInfluence was the natural outgrowth of his first startup, which has grossed more than $6 million in sales with zero paid ads. He did it all through building authority and serving audiences in the media.

Josh is a weekly TV consumer expert in Orlando, writes a syndicated newspaper column to 1.1 million readers, and regularly appears on more than 75 TV stations across the country. All told, Josh has appeared in the media more than 2500 times.

Josh loves living in Orlando, FL with his wife and three children.


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