4 Ways to Save Money in College

Turn your pennies into dollars without touching a single package of Ramen Noodles®.

Make a budget and stick to it

Determine what you need to cover the necessities – rent, education expenses, loans, etc.  Create a budget.  Even a simple budget can help you avoid overspending on a night out when you needed money for a new textbook.

Consider cheap text book options

Did you know you can rent textbooks? Rent a book for as long as you need it and return it when you are done. Check out sites like BookRenter, TextBooks.com, eCampus and CampusBooks. Selling your used textbooks is a great option too. It never hurts to get a little bit of cash back to put toward your next semester.

Different living options

Sometimes room and board can be more expensive than tuition.  So how can you try and lower the cost if you need a place to stay? If you work as a Resident Advisor (RA) you can get significantly reduced costs on room and board and in some cases RA’s rooms are free. If you’re rarely near your own room, look into dorms with fewer amenities.  Even though staying on campus may be a bit pricey, it is nothing compared to staying off site. Yes, you may have a cheaper rent, but when you add utilities, internet, transportation, etc., it can actually be more expensive.

Use your student ID for discounts… EVERYWHERE

Make the most of your student status; take advantage of your student discounts. Save on electronics, enjoy discounts for clothing/shoes, movies, printer ink, fast food/pizza, gym memberships and even traveling.

If you put all of the money you saved into your savings account and didn’t touch it, how much do you think you could really save in a month or even a year? I challenge you to put that money away and see what you can reward yourself with at the end of a month or even a year.

Next week, “Making the Cut: Groceries on the College Budget.”


“24 Ways to Save Money in College” shmoop. College 101. 04 Dec 2013 <http://www.shmoop.com/college/save-money-in-college.html>.

Credit Card Secrets You Can’t Live Without

You want to know the secret to successfully managing a credit card? I’m happy to tell you, it’s really not a secret. It basically boils down to simple common sense

You want to know the secret to successfully managing a credit card? I’m happy to tell you, it’s really not a secret. It basically boils down to simple common sense.

  • Stay out of debt.
    It doesn’t take long for a few purchases to add up to hundreds, even thousands, of dollars. Don’t charge more than you can afford to repay the balance when the bill arrives.
  • Pay it off.
    If you do get into debt, commit yourself to getting debt free as soon as possible. Pay more than the minimum, and don’t charge more on the cards until your balance is at zero.
  • Pay on time.
    If you miss a payment, your credit score can take a quick and hard hit. Furthermore, you may be charged a late payment fee and the late pay may stay on your credit report for years.
  •  Limit the number of cards you have.
    (2-4 is usually a good number.) The more open credit lines you have, the more you may be tempted to spend beyond your means. Also, applying for credit too often can hurt your credit score.

Stay tuned for our next posting Are You Ready for a Credit Card next week!

“The Road to Financial Independence: A Guide for 20-Somethings” BALANCE™ Financial Fitness Program. <https://www.balancepro.net/roadtoindependence/index.html>. 08 February 2013.