Budgeting in college can seem impossible at times. Dealing with classes, extracurriculars, and keeping up a social life, budgeting may be the last thing on a college student’s mind. Here are some tips on how to start a budget in college and stick with it!
Time It Out
Decide on what timeline your budget is going to be based off of. Whether it is on a monthly basis, or weekly, star your budget according to this timeline. This will serve as the foundation of making your budget.
With your timeline set, you now want to begin to track your expense within that time frame. As a college student your expenses may vary. Consider expenses like textbooks, school supplies, your room and board or rent for an apartment, clothing, and groceries. These expenses may vary which is why it is a good reason to track them!
Put Aside Spending Money
Knowing and tracking your expenses are vital in creating your budget. Just as important as expenses are in your budget, so is setting aside money for yourself to spend. Allocate funds to have for you to spend on the on your days off! Ensure that you stick to that amount and it suits your budgeting goals in the long term. Once you have reached the amount for the month do not go over it!
Consider a Budgeting App.
There are plenty of budgeting apps available for free that can help you track your spending and ensure you are on track for your monthly or weekly goal. A personal favorite is Mint. Mint connects your bank account and inputs your purchases in their tracking system. You can then create categories for your budget and allocate money towards them.
Plan For The Future
Now that you have a grasp of your budget you want to think about the future. Consider your financial goals outside of college and what you will be saving for. Whether you are thinking about buying, saving up to purchase a home, or want to save to help pay off your student debt, it is an essential part to know why you are saving your money.