Learn how to save money in college, and you are less likely to get further into debt when you grow older after you have graduated. Keeping hold of your money is tough because you are surrounded by marketing messages that tell you to spend. You think you are immune to marketing, and yet you have no money in your account because you spent it all (do the math). Here are seven tips that will help you save money in college and out of college after you graduate and leave.
1 – Stop Driving, Lose The Car, And Make Friends With Uber Or Lyft
A car is the biggest expense a college student has. What is worse, that expense can last you the rest of your life. You do not have to have a car, but the more you have one, then the more you rely on it. You will find yourself stuck in a financial rut if you are unable to get away from your car.
Try public transport, buy a bike, and learn how to love walking. If that doesn’t suit you, then try a ride-sharing service that doesn’t charge you a lot of money. You do not have to be a slave to your car, no do you have to be weighed down by the financial burden of a vehicle.
2 – Set Your Own Rules And Follow Them
Let’s break down the process for a second. There is no point is continuing to read this article if you are going to ignore its suggestions. Are you physically fit? Do you leave your essays until the last minute? Have you followed through on your last six promises?
If you cannot keep to a diet, then you are probably going to have trouble following your own budgeting/money-saving rules. If you leave your college work until the last minute, then you need to work on your discipline before you try to start savings money. Do you make promises that you do not keep? If you cannot name more than six promises that you have just kept, then you need to work on that before you try to start savings money.
3 – Get An Accountability Buddy
Find somebody else who shares the responsibly of saving money. That is why being in a relationship and being married makes it easier to save money and build wealth. Both partners act as checks and balances for each other. The husband wants to buy a new $80 Christmas tree, when there is nothing wrong with the plastic one in the attic. The wife wants to spend $120 on decorative prints for her car, when that money could be better spent on a new and more efficient microwave.
4 – Learn The Value And Fun Of Saving
Sign up with a good peer-to-peer savings company. Look for one that allows you to invest money into a savings account for just one month. You start with X amount, and at the end of the month, you have X+% amount.
It may not sound like nothing, but being able to watch your money grow is actually great fun. Put in your first $100 into a peer-to-peer savings account with a good APY of 1.1%, and by the end of the month you have $101.10. It doesn’t seem like much, but that $1.10 came from nowhere. It is almost as if somebody just walked up to your house and handed you the money. What is more brilliant is that if you invest it again and add a little more, such as another $20, then you start with $121.10, and in a month you have $122.32. Again, it doesn’t seem like much, but again, it is like last month somebody turned up and gave you $1.10 for doing nothing, and this month they are giving you $1.22 for doing nothing. It is free money!
5 – Stop Cutting Your Food Budget
Most people cut money from their food budget first because it is the easiest place to cut money from. Sadly, it works the other way too. It is also the easiest place to overspend. Just because you have cut your food budget doesn’t mean you will stick to it. In fact, by cutting your food budget, you may be deluding yourself into believing you are saving more money than you are.
Find ways of making your food purchases last longer. Find ways of making meals where you can save the leftovers. Discover different ingredients and new types of meals that are healthy. Forget about the cost, and consider the quality of your food. You are less likely to spend money on snacks if you are full of nutritious food.
6 – Beware Of The Blowback Effect
The blowback effect is where you tighten your belt and suffer for a while, but after so long you become so ground down that you binge on the things you have been missing. Dieters and alcoholics do it all the time. They deny themselves the things they love the most and they suffer for a long time. Then, they hit a bump in the road and before you know it, the house is full of cakes and Carlsberg. Beware the blowback effect.
7 – Deny Yourself Access To All Of Your Money
You will be surprised what money-saving tips you will come up with yourself if you are forced to. Don’t just learn to live on just 70% of your income, actually go the extra step and hide 30% of your income.
Lock the money away in a place where you cannot get to it. It may be in a small CD, or maybe in some sort of peer-to-peer savings account. No matter what, you must make sure you cannot get to your money. If you can get to your money, then you have no incentive to scrimp and save.
The 30% you do not spend will become your savings. The 70% you have to live on will become your lifeline. You will start to learn and think up new ways to live on your budget. You will be more money conscious because you know you have less of it. Plus, you will have to experience the horror of going hungry, and going hungry is a good motivator.