Peer pressure... it is perhaps the most popular and oft used word amongst students. When I was in college, More often than not my hosteller classmates would whine and complain about running out of money half way down a month. On the other hand, there were few who would talk about freelancing, interning or taking up tuition classes to support their expenses. It is alright to be clear about your resources and expenditure costs while living away from home and especially when you are a student. So, you can always choose alternatives to spend time with your friends without secluding yourself. As for example, offer for a cheaper food joint with a friendly ambience instead of high-end ones to spend time with your buddies, thereby balancing both sides without compromising.
Shweta Jain, Founder, Investography, said,
“Students need to start managing money even when it is given by parents. I know quite a few students who not only save money but also dabble in investing or trading or speculation. This is a time when they are getting familiar with money. They should experiment a little bit so they understand how things work. Losing money at this stage is a little less painful and the lessons learnt are less costly than when they start dabbling with money once they start earning.”
Here are a few tricks for all students to manage their money:
This is a difference, which even a 30-year-old adult fails to comprehend. So, it is pretty natural that an 18-year-old college student will also not be able to make out the fine line of difference between the two, and end up spending unnecessarily. However, it is of utmost importance that one learns to prioritise between want and need, let’s divide it into two-fold; First, one must learn to budget by dividing your expenses into fixed and discretionary ones. In your fixed expenses lies cost of conveyance, books, stationery, bills and rents. After allotting money for these, whatever remains can be considered for your discretionary expenditure or savings.
Second, a simple question that needs to be asked for a clear answer... ‘Can I do without it?’ if the answer is positive then you know it is just a desire which can be stalled for later. Thus adding to your savings.
Staying away from home makes a person responsible and careful. The major expense for college students is on purchasing books and study materials. Given that books come costly, one can always purchase them second-hand which comes comparatively cheap or avail the college library for those materials which you won’t be using in the future much.
Nowadays, colleges and universities have subscriptions and enrollment in journal websites. You can also avail to such facilities to prevent further expenses. Try to maintain a note of your daily expenses. This will help you to realise the unnecessary expenses, thereby helping you to avoid them.
If you think that the amount deposited in your account every month is not being sufficient, then you can always earn some extra cash by interning, freelancing or even providing tuitions.
Currently working as a content writer Sneha Santra, 23, a resident of Delhi started to bear her own expenses since her college days by taking up freelance projects, internships and also providing tuitions. “The projects and tuition together fetched me around Rs. 12,000 per month which was sufficient and also taught me to be responsible with the money,” said Santra.
With digitisation gaining pace, many of us have developed the habit of spending online. However, no habit is good if overdone. Similarly, a serious drawback of online transaction is you never know when you have over-expended. A major drawback of allowing plastic cards to students is that they are at risk of being debt ridden through indiscriminate usage.
“There are a variety of apps available today that can help them do this. As a student, I found it easier to budget various expenses and ensure that there is some savings too, which invariably was planned for gifts or parties,” stated Jain.