Head-Start: Money-Saving Habits to Adopt Now to Have More in the FutureBy Ernest Hamilton, UniversityHerald Reporter
In school, most students never take the time out to think about their futures. To be clear, we're speaking of financial futures. Sure, you go to school with aspirations to work in you perspective field, but in the process of classes, studying, tests, and trying to establish and maintain a social life, most students never stop to think about how the actions and decisions they make now can have a major impact on them later in life, both positively and negatively.
The decision-making process you have now will indeed go with you in life, and if you have the habit of making bad decisions, you're going to continue down that negative spiral... unless you do something about it right now.
As a college student, you may not be thinking about your financial future but if even a "bug" can be put in your ear about money-saving habits to adopt, you'll have a much brighter financial future. If you're at least willing to try one or two of these habits, you'll carry them with you later on in life and it will indeed pay off greatly for you.
Money-Saving Habits to Adopt Now
Set Up a Savings Account
If you're going to make the effort to save, the most basic staple you need is a savings account, right? Of course. Most people will try to keep the money they saved in their savings account and it never works because the temptation is too close to spend the money... A few swipes of your card and the money you saved will be confused with your regular money; the next thing you know, your saved money is gone.
As a college student, you probably don't have much money but if you can save as little as $3 to $5 per week, it will quickly add up, and it will give you a little more peace of mind knowing that you have a little extra stashed away in case of emergencies. Visit a bank that has locations worldwide, in case you're in college out of state. Also, look for banks that offer the most financial benefits as well.
Look For Ways to Reduce Your Bills
At this point, you may not have major bills right now like paying rent or a mortgage, but whether you do or not, it's a good habit to look at your monthly expenses and try to find ways to lower those costs. This is a good habit to adopt now because once you get into the real world with real bills, this habit will work in your favor.
If you live off-campus, then you're more than likely paying, rent, utility bills, cell phone bills, etc. Once you move off-campus, this is prime time to start looking into ways to lower your monthly costs.
One tip is to use your college privileges every chance you get. Most companies offer college discounts to students. Cell phone companies, internet companies, even fast-food restaurants, offer college discounts, so use this to your advantage. For your electric bill, it will more than likely be high for you because you'll be studying, having friends over, and simply forgetting to turn off the lights or properly adjust your thermostat.
So between carelessness and just not knowing how to work your thermostat, finding a way to lower your electric bill will prove beneficial for you. Now, depending on where you're living, you can opt for alternative electricity, which is electricity generated from renewable energy. If you happen to be living off-campus in Texas, you can compare rates of TX energy suppliers and find the most affordable option for you.
Look For Roommates
Okay, so there are pros and cons of roommates, especially when you had them living in a dorm room but they sure will help you save money if you live off-campus.
Apartments off-campus are typically a little cheaper than apartments further out from the school simply because landlords know that college students will more than likely be renting from them. Imagine rent being $800 a month and you have a roommate... that's $400 a piece you both would pay, making your savings account look pretty good.
In fact, according to Forbes, a study by StudySoup revealed that college students could save upwards of over $15,000 over the course of four years by having roommates. This, of course, isn't a route you have to take but the savings sure would give you a bright financial future.
Go to Free Events
Having fun in college doesn't have to be expensive or cost anything at all. The people who put on events for college students understand that college students are "broke," and can't afford to spend too much of anything on anything, so they make it a point to host free events.
There are tons of campus events that are free, and they usually have free food and drinks too. True enough, it might be sandwiches or hot dogs but it's sure better than the cafeteria food! Stop by your student affairs office or check bulletin boards around campus to stay updated on what's going on around campus, more so, what type of free events are happening!
Trust and believe you won't be the only one looking for free fun!