Recent studies have shown that around 80% of college students will be burdened with debt when they graduate. Last year the average student debt in the United States was $25,250 (up 9.1% from the previous year) and is set to rise again this year. No one wants to be burdened with debt, especially at such as a younger age. Due to this, it is important to be proactive about managing money.
Managing personal finance when you begin college is the only way to reduce the debt burden of student loans. Fortunately, there are many ways you can reduce your dependency on surviving on student loans. Here are three tips that you can use to save money as a student.
Ways to Save Money As a Student
1. Cut down on Expenses – An obvious way to save money is to stop spending it. Make a list of all the things you spend money on and then separate that list into necessities and luxuries. From each list, try to remove items completely or reduce them by downgrading. For example, if you normally spend $10 on lunch, why not try to spend $5 by buying healthier food? Or if you spend $20 on drinks on a Friday, why not skip drinking for a few weeks? You will be surprised at how much you can save by taking a look at your expenses and optimizing your spending
2. Save Money on College Textbooks – There are a few ways to save money on college textbooks and one of the most underused is through renting them. New services such as Campus Book Rentals allow students all over the United States to rent books instead of buying them. As you will probably already know, textbooks can be a major expense of studying as some of these books can cost up to $100. By renting the book for a semester instead of purchasing them, you can save up to 50% on some titles. These savings of $30 – $50 at a time for each book can mount up over time and make a big difference to your overall student budget.
3. Try a part time job – Finding a part time job can be difficult and finding the time to work a part time job when you are studying for a doctorate or masters can be even harder. Nonetheless, many people may ends meet by working weekends at a bar or restaurant. The pay may not be particularly appealing but it will be enough to cover basic expenses and stop you from accruing more debt which you will have to pay interest on.
If you enjoy writing and researching, becoming a part time freelance writer may be more to your liking. Sites such as Elance and Odesk allow you to sell your article writing services to other people. You can expect to earn around $5 – $10 for a 500 word article.
Whether you are a new student or one that has already been in higher education for a few years, the three tips above should help you to reduce your student debt and save money during your studies.