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Budgeting and Managing Money as a Student

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Just like businessmen, students need to learn how to budget and manage their money judiciously. Money management is an essential human skill necessary for navigating this world that is ruled by money. This is one of the scariest parts of leaving home. For most people, their parents handled all the financials at home. They’ve never had to worry about managing money until when they left home to live on their own in school.

The reason universities are so important is that they help mold us into the kind of adults we’ll be. Now, figuring out how to manage one’s finances in university is an essential lesson every young adult should undertake.

Students often complain about being broke, especially during the exam periods. For most, part of the reason for their broke-ness is because their guardians don’t send them enough money. While for some, it is purely as a result of their own irresponsibility. Either way, necessary managerial skills are needed if you must minimise being broke as a student.

1. Create a budget:

It might be weekly, monthly or per session depending on how often you get money. Create an airtight budget and stick to it. Identify and separate your needs from your wants; the necessities from the optional. Now, write down your basic needs first. List out the essentials you need first before. Things such as school supplies like books, assignments, etc. and personal needs like toiletries, food, clothing, etc. Write down essential bills like rent, light, water, transportation etc. Set apart money for these essentials before moving on to your optional needs.

2. Minimise expenses as much as you can:

You can start by using your food budget to shop for long-lasting foodstuffs instead of eating take-out. No matter how much you hate cooking, you need to cook occasionally if you’ll survive financially as a student. Eating out constantly will deplete your account. But purchasing foodstuffs will save your life. Have non-perishable foods like yam, rice, beans etc. around, then all you need to worry about is how to get ingredients for cooking them. Cut out other little things you indulge in that drains your cash – smoking, lipsticks, shoes, etc.

3. Borrow less:

If you plan your finances better, you won’t have any need for borrowing money from your pals. Taking out a huge chunk of your pocket money to settle debts once it arrives shatters your finances. Figure out a way to borrow less. I know we only borrow because we desperately need what we are borrowing at that instant but try to rake through your mind and find out all the unnecessary you’ve been borrowing and stop it.

4. Use free students’ provision/resources:

Most schools offer free WIFI to their students. If you utilise your school WIFI, it might help you cut down on your internet expenses. Be on the lookout for such other free provisions for students. Don’t be too ashamed to make use of public utilities. Your expenses will be significantly cut down, so why be ashamed?

5. Get an extra means of income:

The truth is that we’re never not in need of money. With the way the economy is depreciating, we always need money. So, depending on your guardians just isn’t gonna cut it. You need to make what you need yourself. Thank God for the 21st century and all the gist it brought us. You have technology – your phone/laptop, internet, and social media. Find out what you are good at doing – your passion, skills. And utilize it. Social media isn’t just about flexing; use it to market your talent and earn extra income.

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