College students who graduated in 2013 had an average student loan debt of $28,400, according to a press release from the Institute of College Access and Success’ Project on Student Debt.
Budgeting will help cut down these costs significantly because it will make you more cautious of your spending — from the ordinary pizza run to a textbook purchase.
Tips for success
- Create an Excel document of your expenses. If you track everything from groceries to school supplies, you will be more conscious of your ?spending.
- Apply for scholarships when possible, and fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid to see if you qualify for certain grants.
- Devise a pre-arranged plan before each semester, detailing where you plan to spend your money. If you divide your money into specific categories, you’ll be more aware of how much you’re spending.
- Make a list of wants versus needs for your budget and designate how much you will use per category.
- Carry cash with you at all times, so you don’t use your credit or debit card mindlessly. It’s easy to constantly spend on your card, but with cash, everything is tangible.
- Organize all your receipts. This organization will help when you need to return something or compare your receipts to your credit card or debit card statement.
- On average, both in-state and out-of-state students allot about $2,091 toward “other expenses” in their budgets.
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