How Do I Live on a Budget at College?

How Do I Live on a Budget at College?

September 24, 2019 0 By Ronny Jaskolski


Go to the financial aid office
and they’re the ones that
can educate you, right. So be in their face.
Your loan money is for school. When you get your loan check,
they’re gonna give you a check. It might be $10,000. Might be $15,000, right? And it’s tempting to think that
that money is yours. In college,
you are broke. You don’t have extra money.
It may feel like extra money,
but it’s not. Because if you spend it
on something other than
your books or your tuition or your food
and you run out, they’re not gonna be like, “Oh,
here’s a little bit more.” We learned about the different
ways to pay for college, but what about having money
to spend in general? Do you like to shop
like I like to shop? Or order pizza
on those late study nights? Or maybe you just want
to go out and celebrate after a long week
of classes. The next thing you know,
your account is in the red, and the overdraft fees
have piled up. If you’re like me and 43%
of full-time undergrads, you’ll have to work
while going to school. And even if you don’t need
a part-time job, budgeting is crucial for
making it through the semester without going broke. Let’s dive into that
right now. I’m CC Allen from Now This,
and you’re watching “A Student’s Guide
To Your First Year of College.”( music playing )Today’s episode is all about
how to make smart money moves
during your freshman year. Emmanuel Moses
from the Opportunity Network is back with tips to keep you
and your bank account happy. Direct costs and indirect costs,
you know what that is? It is important for you
to understand what you have
to pay to the school and what you have to pay
for yourself. I think one of the biggest
things and takeaways is where you have to spend
your money and what money you have
to spend. There’s certain things
called expenses and necessities. How many of us budget
at all? Ooh, okay.
What do you owe to the school? Room, board, tuition, fees. All the things that are gonna be
expected of you every semester. What money do you have
to pay for that? Is it grants?
Is it scholarships?
Are you taking out loans? Are you fortunate enough that
your parents have some money
to give to it? You decided not to have brunch
with your roommates. But it is Sunday at 2PM. Everybody got to do laundry. Everybody.
That’s seven bucks.
Gone. If you go in the red,
that’s all right. You reforecast later on. Maybe save a little bit
more money. What about those indirect costs?
Those other expenses that you aren’t paying
to the school. Whether you want to consistently
have your caramel macchiato or if you have to pay
for your biology book. Or even having enough money
to get home for Thanksgiving
or winter break. You never know what can happen, and so always being cognizant of
your money is extremely
important. Always making sure that you have
tabs on everything that
you’re spending, how much you’re saving,
and also how much your school
is giving you. Indirect costs.
Books, access codes, what else? Transportation.
So indirect costs are this idea
of like, hey, this is what you need
to be a quote/unquote
“successful student.” Many of my students
who are into the arts require a lot more funding
for materials, for going to expos
and being able to sort of
meet those passions, which are not necessarily
always funded, but again, as freshmen
you may not know that yet,
but you’ve got time. They are asking you to make an estimate of what
you’re paying based off of
what they feel. Because what’s the worst thing
is that you come in
and you’re like, “I got everything covered,”
but now you ain’t even thinking
about the other things like getting back home,
having to pay for those books, having to go get coffee
or technology. As you get more and more
comfortable with managing money and understanding what you have
to spend and don’t, then you understand
what other avenues you can do. 20 bucks for dinner
with friends. – students: No.
– I know, I know. Now, $15 for student tickets
to the concert of your favorite
music artist. $15, that’s your choice.
We got this idea of necessities
and luxuries. Socializing, it’s up to you.
See, now you’re budgeting. Now you’re budgeting.
Now you’re understanding
what the costs are. You will need to know
where you can get your money. If you’re going to a school
outside of your city, make sure that they have
the bank that you use a lot. So know the difference between
bank accounts. What’s a checkings?
What’s a savings? And be careful and wary
of credit cards. Credit cards are not bad, but credit cards need as much
research as anything else
you’ve done. Of course, pay your bill
for school first. That’s the first thing
in general. The biggest thing
that is important for anyone
who is first generation is knowing where to find
the information and know that they are worthy
to ask and ask for that help. So those are the things that
most students don’t necessarily
think about, but should be at top of mind
when thinking about finances
and budgeting. A lot of people be so ready
to just, you know, live off campus
or live on their own, not understanding the finances
behind it. Don’t be scared to go into
the financial aid office. Don’t be scared
to seek out help. If you don’t know what
you’re doing, don’t do it. I should have been focused more
on budgeting for what I needed
to get by. For rent, for utilities,
for all of those things. For food.
And then taken part of that, half of that,
whatever’s leftover,
and just putting it away. I also wish I had learned how
to budget all of that properly so that I can handle
my finances because life happens and things–
things come up. There is a difference between
tuition and cost of attendance. Tuition is what you owe
the university or the college. Cost of attendance
is all the other things
that have to get factored in. Your housing, your food,
your transportation,
everything like that. That oftentimes these
scholarships and grants,
et cetera, do not cover. And so making sure
that you’re preparing for
the cost of attendance became something that was
a real lesson learned for me and something I had
to figure out. And that’s where things like
work study and additional jobs
ended up factoring in. Make sure you’re making
a budget. You may discover that you need
more money for books or for food
or other things. There are actually oftentimes
additional scholarships for mid-year or mid– mid–
sort of semester crises or just the needs
that you have. So go to your financial aid
office and ask them, hey,
I need more money. I did my budget wrong.
Or I thought I needed
more money. The school financial aid offices
oftentimes can point you
towards scholarships They can help you
with your budget and give you
some financial aid classes around how to do
fiscal literacy, which means learning how
to balance a budget, create a budget,
and figure out what you need. It’s important that they know
that you’re having a problem. And then they can readjust
your financial aid package
to give you what you need. We don’t you to be so afraid
of taking out money that you find yourself
without enough money to be successful
when you’re at school. So that’s why you gotta be
focused. You take out loan money,
you got to now be on your game because you don’t finish
a semester, they still get paid.
You don’t get the credit. So that’s the kind of
mindfulness you have to take on as you are accumulating
this financial responsibility. Just talking about finances
can be terrifying, especially if you don’t know
what questions to ask. It’s okay if you feel
uncertain or overwhelmed. Money is scary.
Start with asking for help from your financial aid
officers. Here are some of the things
you can discuss with them.One, finding out where you can
access your money.
Making sure the bank
you use at home has a branch
in the city your school is in.
Two, learning the difference
between bank accounts.
Checking versus savings
versus credit cards.
Three, understanding what
your indirect costs will be.
Money you’ll spend on things
like books, school supplies,
food and transportation,
and social life.
And four, looking for
additional mid-year
scholarships.
If you have a financial
emergency and need more money, there are options available.
Thanks so much for watching “A Student’s Guide
To Your First Year of College.”