Financial Planning for College Students: 5 Things You Need to Know

Going to college requires strategic financial planning. Even with student loans, scholarships and other forms of financial assistance, it is still vital that you plan your finances to ease the burden when you finish college.

When you are in college or prior to commencing your first semester, you can make a conscious effort to plan your finances to create a financial cushion for yourself.

Here are five financial planning tips that you need to know if you are starting college.

Create a Budget

Never underestimate the power of creating a budget. Even before you go to college, you can create a simple budget to highlight your income and your expenditure. Work out how much you can afford to spend each week and how much you can afford to save.

 Before you go to college, you won’t be fully aware of how much you would need to spend when you are there, however, it is vital that you practice budgeting before you go to college in order to train your mind on how to budget your money.

Get a Job

Get a part-time job, a side hustle or a contract gig, just get something to boost your income. Even if you are getting financial assistance, use your side hustle income to save or invest. It is never too early to start saving and investing.

Don’t Take a Student Loan if You Don’t Have to

Student loans are available to students who need extra financial assistance to get through their college years. However, if you don’t need a student loan, don’t get one. Student loans leave you in debt before you even walk the stage for your graduation. Therefore, if you have enough money to fund your college education without a student loan, definitely consider doing so.

For example, if you are due to start college in a few years, and are trying to figure out how to get into Yale. Start putting money aside ahead of time, don’t wait until the last minute before you start saving for your college education, start now.

Start Saving

If you are due to start college in a few years, you can start saving and investing. Find out your options when it comes to saving and investing by asking your bank advisor. If you don’t already have a savings account, consider opening one.

Be Frugal

As a young person, being frugal can be difficult, however, if you plan your finances well enough, you will know where to cut your expenditure to fit your budget. For example, save money by cooking your meals in advance instead of eating take out all the time. If your college offers in-house meals as part of your college tuition, take advantage of it.

Find creative ways to save money and try to be as frugal as possible during your college years and before you start college.

Financial planning is crucial, it might not seem like an important thing to consider right now as a young person about to embark on a new life journey, however, if you plan your financial future now, you won’t have to worry about it later.

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