“I have enough money to last me the rest of my life, unless I buy something.” ~ Jackie Mason.
And there’s the first money saving tip for students: don’t buy anything unless you need it to live. Good thing air is free.
One of the best ways to save money is to buy less and invest more. I’m not necessarily talking about investing in stocks or real estate — I’m talking about investing in yourself by going to college or university. That is a short-term sacrifice that will probably pay off big time in the long run.
And, here are five ways to save a little more money every month…
5 Tips on Saving Money for Students
Before you can save money, you have to make it! If you don’t have a job, read 10 High Paying Part Time Jobs for College Students.
1. Get budget help from a frugal person…or even a financial planner. If you’re struggling to stick to your household budget – much less invest in your education or pay the rent! – find a frugal person. Sit down with her, share your expenses and income, and ask how her to help you spend less and save more money. Frugal people don’t just pinch pennies; they know how to make smart money decisions. Let them help you save money as a student.
2. Find two new ways to minimize your financial expenses every month. You’ve heard all the smart ways to save money tips before…but do you actually implement or use them? Here’s one way to make those money saving tips for students work: practice two new ways to save money every month. For instance, you could focus on saving money on your grocery bill and reducing transportation costs one month. The next month, concentrate on spending less money on lunches and saving more money by not letting leftover food go to waste. It takes some initial time and effort to incorporate those money saving tips into your everyday life, but it eventually becomes part of your lifestyle….and they’ll speed up your financial growth.
3. Find ways to maximize your income. Are you due for a promotion or raise at work? Does your employment make full use of your education and training? Can you take courses that will elevate you to the next level in your career? Can you create sources of passive income? This all depends on your job situation, work environment, and even the city you live in…but it’s worth exploring.
If you’re living on student loans, read 5 Reasons to Love Student Loan Debt in College.
4. Avoid the “house rich, money poor” scenario. We’re buying a new home, and are tempted to get a bigger mortgage than we had before. There are so many beautiful homes with beautiful views in Vancouver! But, we decided it’s more important to pay off a smaller mortgage and live in a smaller home than to have a big mortgage and a big house. If you have no hope of paying your rent (no matter how many tips on saving money for students you find!), consider selling, getting roommates, and living in relative squalor until you’re done school.
5. Comb through your expenses. Both my husband and I had student loans, and we’re good with money. But we’re living in lean times – I have tuition and book expenses for graduate school, and he doesn’t have a job right now. The best tip on saving money for students is to stop paying for things you don’t need. We don’t have cable tv or any tv bills; we only watch Netflix. We don’t have a landline; we have a couple of cell phones. We almost never eat out in restaurants, and I never buy coffees or muffins from the restaurants on campus.
For more tips on saving money for students, read How to Save Money for a Down Payment on a House. It doesn’t matter what you’re saving money for — money is money.