There are many reasons that a student may want to start saving money while in college. Mounting student loan debt and the desire to buy a home after graduation are two of the most common reasons students strive to put away as much as possible during their college years. If you’re looking for ways you can join the trend and stash some cash, you’ve come to the right place. Here are five ways college students can save money while in college.
Start A Savings Account
One of the easiest ways students can start saving money is with automatic transfers from checking to savings. Some banks offer programs where purchases are rounded up to the nearest dollar and the excess change is deposited into a savings account. That is easy and automatic savings right there.
Other banks allow you to use direct deposit to split your check up in numerous ways, so you can save money without thinking about it. You won’t even have the money long enough to spend it. Saving the money before it finds its way to your checking account is the easiest way to go about growing a nest egg.
As you earn money and add to your savings, you should consider investing the money in places where it can’t be touched, such as a one, three or five year certificate of deposit (CD) account. This way, you’ll resist the urge to take your savings and spend them on unimportant things, like spring break vacations.
If you don’t mind getting a little dirty you can collect cans and bottles around your campus. Students often times leave their empty containers in the cafeteria, study areas, dorms and everywhere else around campus. Help beautify your school, help the environment and get some pocket change by picking the cans and bottles up and recycling them. While this won’t amount to much, it’s better than nothing and every little bit helps.
Get To Know Your Professor
If you have a little extra time to spare, you could try doing tasks for professors to gain extra cash. Many professors hire students as lab assistants, tutors for underclassmen, and even baby sitters for their own children. Professors are one of the best networking opportunities a college student has, so it never hurts to get to know your professors on a professional level beyond the classroom. Extra cash flow from odd jobs means extra savings opportunities.
Reduce Partying Expenses
College students are well known for partying and drinking, so if this describes you, take a minute to look at how much you spend each month on alcohol, both at home and away. Drinking less frequently, drinking less expensive liquor, or opting to go out less are all easy ways you can effortlessly save money. You can even mooch off your friends or hit up parties where the booze is already provided.
Being frugal is about more than just saving money, it’s about not being wasteful too. Each semester students buy shiny brand new textbooks from their campus bookstore. They use them for a few months and then are done with them. Some students try and sell them but rarely get half as much as they originally paid for them. One solution to that problem is to rent your textbooks instead of buying them.
With just a little bit of discipline you can save slowly over your college career to create a sizable nest egg for when you graduate. Many students have worked and saved through college to be able to afford a down payment on a house, a new car, or a dramatic reduction in student loan debt. Reducing expenses, increasing income, and saving whenever possible is the best way to ensure your future dreams will be possible.