When was the last time you looked at your bank account? Was it this morning? Yesterday? Or are you afraid to look?
Budgeting is key to managing your income and expenses; it is a process of creating a plan to spend your money. As a student, it is often hard to budget your money, especially while having an active social life or a part-time job. Learning how to plan a budget and stick to it is important. If you do not have a budget yet, it's not too late to create one.
Here are a few tips on budgeting:
- Create a spreadsheet with your income and expenses;
- Identify the difference between needs and wants (see below);
- Avoid the “treat yourself” mentality - plan short-term and long-term budgets;
- Don't shop when you're hungry - create a grocery list for things you need and plan your meals of the week;
- Use phone apps that help you budget (e.g. Flipp is an app that has local weekly coupons and flyers for product discounts and groceries)
- Bring food from home and invest in a thermos;
- Search for bursaries and scholarships;
- Set up your student bank account.
Here are the needs:
- Housing - rent and utilities
- Transportation (as a student, bus services are free)
- Insurance (included in tuition)
Here are the wants:
- Designer clothing
- Monthly memberships
Need help budgeting for school?
Here are helpful links and resources that can help you with your budgeting plan: