10 Great Money Tips for the Financially Strapped Student
July 13, 2018
For students who are financial strapped, it can very trying to cope with the different pressures that bears down upon you. Even before you are able to complete your studies to earn your keep, you can be facing possible problems with keeping up with your studies in the first place. There are people’s opinions of you to manage, stress from assignments and projects, mandatory curricular activities’ hours you might have to clock and the most of all, the next meal you can afford and where to lay your head for the night.
But things might not be so unmanageable if one sits down to work out your financial plan. And even more so, being financially strapped does not mean you cannot enjoy your days as a student or indulge yourself once in a while. Everyone, even the poorest of the poor, is entitled to some pleasures of life occasionally. All you need are some ideas and tips in doing so:
Work out a budget
The basic thing is to work out your present income or savings and planning your expenses. You can work out treats once in a while if you can afford them. Having a plan will provide structure and meaning, thus giving you a better peace of mind to focus on the other important things.
Set aside some savings
It is important to have some backup savings to tide over some emergencies or unforeseen expenses. Having a backup savings gives you some buffer and less stress.
Take advantage of discounts
Planning ahead makes you keep an eye for discounts. Coupons, bulk buying can save you some cash in the long run. Sometimes you can even treat yourself like in 1-for-1 deals or off-peak promotions.
Pay in cash
Paying in cash makes it easier to account for your expenditure. It is advisable to break your carry cash into smaller denominations so that the tendency to overspend will be lesser.
Cut expensive habits
Do you smoke or drink? Perhaps being financially strapped would give a good reason to break these habits. Additionally, if you’re a gamer looking for a fix, it might be a better idea to check out an inexpensive laptop for PC gaming instead of an expensive console with $60 games. Check out some of the best gaming laptops under 1000 dollars here.
Seek school aid
There are grants and aid programs that help students tide over difficult periods. Look up the school’s website, newsletter or even approach the administration staff. They can point to the direction where you can seek aid or loan that can help you ease your burden.
Having a group of close friends or a tight-knitted community can help you save a lot of money. You can pool in resources to buy things in bulk or have meals together which are cheaper to prepare when done together. Be it washing of clothes, renting a movie together, enjoying a day out at the beach, going as a group has its perks and the support you get is intangible.
Use the library
The library supplies the books that you cannot afford to buy. It has resources like the computer and sometimes stationery for use as well. Since you are a student, make full use of it instead of going to the bookstore.
When you feel that you have some extra time to spare after school and need some extra income, part timing can be an option. Local supermarkets hire students as cashiers or inventory stock-takers. You can deliver pizzas, newspapers or milk. There are a plethora of jobs for students who want to work – you just have to look for them.
There is an increasing trend of people looking to earn an income online and you can be successful even with no start-up cost. The best thing is that it is flexible and can be done outside your school hours. This can supplement your life as a student.
Adolescent Banking Tips
February 5, 2018
The banking practices of a six-year old are quite simple. Finding quarters on the sidewalk equals hoarding quarters in a pillow case, an old tuna jar, or the bathroom drawer. The banking practices of a fifty-year old, though considerably more complex, are almost as well defined. For the astute researcher, there is a myriad of information about IRAs, 401(k)s, retirement plans, social security planning, home equity, low-risk investment, etc. However, adolescents traverse a tricky field; they don’t have $10,000 to invest in blue-chip equities, but they have considerably more than eleven nickels they pocketed from their older sister. With enough information, however, an adolescent is more than capable of creating an action-oriented financial plan that does more than keep the nickels and dimes safe – it becomes an introduction to the more complex but ultimately more rewarding world of adult finance.
Don’t Be a Lazy Bum.
A balance should be struck between sweat-shop labor and habitual laziness, where inactivity is tempered only by slurping soda or switching channels. Adolescence is simply the best opportunity for maturing children to learn responsibility, finances and time management. After adolescence, a job becomes a necessarily lifeline. It’s no longer of question of funds for parties, movies, or treats – it’s a choice between housing and homelessness. This pressure is not present for an adolescent. Life lessons can be learned without the drains of financial needs. Most importantly, part-time employment teaches responsibility and personal management, as well as imparting self-esteem. Young adults learn to contribute to society, while making personal gains.
Which jobs are best for teenagers? Be creative – sadly, many teenage jobs require no intellect, no enthusiasm and no talent. However, there are several welcome opportunities encouraging independence and entrepreneurship. For girls, try baby-sitting. For guys, try lawn-care and home maintenance. Fan the creative flame – if the teenager is an artist or a performer, transform that artistic energy into a cash-making enterprise. Don’t be a lazy bum – engage, learn, and grow.
My Sock Is Too Small
It’s a happy day when the hard-gained sums of cash and dollar bills overflow the sock bank. This is the great transition from childhood to adolescence; now, what to do with all that money? Banks are the saviors of overfilled socks, coin jars, and other assorted storage containers. This is for two reasons: first, they provide monetary security. With very exceptions, banks are the safest places to keep your money. With the ever-flowing international river of credit, assorted contracts, and incredible quantity of money floating around, the days of banks suddenly “going under” are long-gone. With that said, some banks are better than others. Choose institutions that have been around for a while and also review customer satisfaction. In addition, banks will generally specialize in certain areas – cash loans, equities, real estate investment, etc. Find a bank that specializes in a reliable field. Most importantly, choose one with lots of money. Then select the best type of account. For individuals with less than ten thousand dollars, the practical options are limited. First, there is a basic savings account. This, in terms of investment, is nearly worthless. Rarely even matching inflation rates, savings accounts will rarely breach 2% annual interest. They are a proper choice for a mere introduction to the banking system, but look for ways to improve your money management. Second, check out CDs (Certificate of Deposits). Although not the choice if you plan on withdrawing funds often (a pre-mature withdrawal typically entails loss of all interest gained over a specified period), they can be a great way to turn compound interest to your advantage. For many teens, who want easy access to cash but also want to be able to make money through interest, consider a dynamic duo: a savings account (or a checking account) and a three to six month CD. Third, for more aspiring (a.k.a. richer) adolescents, consider instituting an IRA (Individual Retirement Account) or even an investment portfolio – although, if you’re under eighteen, parents will set to set up an overseer account. There are several programs set designed to specifically address equity or bond investment for teens with low amounts of cash but high amounts of curiosity.
Save Smart, Live Happy
Living frugally does not mean going with wants or desires. In fact, in the long run, saving smart allows you to purchase what you really want. A Snickers bar may look quite delectable at ten o’clock at night, but a bass guitar looks fantastic for years. Financial management doesn’t simply mean how to earn money; it also entails how to save and spend money. For many teens, especially pre-teens and young adolescents, these lessons may be new and unfamiliar. Parental supervision in these instances is not inappropriate interference but necessary direction.
So what are the key methods of saving smart and living happy? Take time and consider every purchase. A good rule of thumb is don’t buy what you hadn’t planned to buy. When evaluating a purchase, consider its long-term importance and enjoyment. A $10 football can give much more enjoyment than $10 worth of donuts and bagels. Prioritize: what is needed, what is wanted, and what is really wanted? And don’t be stingy – treat yourself occasionally to an exciting movie, tasty pizza, or eye-turning pair of jeans. The secret to financial happiness is simple: save lots, prioritize, spend little.
Adolescent banking and finance doesn’t have to be confusing. When pursued in a proper manner, it is well worth the time and effort. The teenage years are a phenomenal opportunity to develop character, financial management, and a sizeable personal piggy bank. It is time to put those quarters – and the sock – to some good use.