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Most people who decide to go to college are left with very little money because most of their income goes toward tuition or cash loans and student loans. For most freshmen, this is their first experience living away from home and they haven’t learned how to effectively budget their money. If you are one of these people, here are a few tips to help you out.
What Do You Need Money For?
Most people will end up taking out student loans or short term loans, but it is important that you consider how much money you will need. If you don’t figure this out first, you can end up taking out either too much or too little. Consider the following things:
- How much is tuition? This changes from school to school, so the amount of money you take out in loans may vary and you may end up taking more or less out of your savings. This will also have an effect on the amount you have left over for other necessities.
- What is included in tuition and what do you have to pay for yourself? In some schools the cost of food is included in tuition, so that’s one less extra you have to pay for yourself, but in others there is no food service provided and you will have to spend your own money on food. You should also think about the cost of living space if you aren’t rooming in a dorm, along with the cost of Internet, laundry, and other extras.
- How much is your income? If you have a regular income then you should decide how much will go toward tuition and savings and how much you will spend on extras like food, clothes, phone bill, etc. If you have no income at all, taking out a larger student loan may be required.
Budgeting Your Money
Determining how much money you will need and how much you have will help you a lot. Make a list of what you will need to pay for along with the cost of each item, then figure out how much money you have in savings and will receive each month. List the most important things first. If the cost of these items is more than you have, you may have to cut back or eliminate some items. Also, try to avoid buying unnecessary items.