5 Budget Hacks for Incoming College Students

posted on Friday, August 24, 2018

One of the great perils of attending college is learning to live on a budget. That’s why Midwest Heritage is providing several tips that can help ensure college students don’t get overextended on their finances.

While creating a budget is the first key to financial responsibility, there are several steps college students can take to reduce expenses while they are in school. They include:

  1. Use your student ID. As a college student, your student ID can act as a gateway to discounts. Watch for discounts at local businesses and online retailers as well that can help you save on expenses during your college career.
  2. Stockpile can and bottle money. In Iowa, certain beverage cans and bottles are redeemable for 5 cents apiece. Consider saving the money collected from cans and bottles and using them on household expenses. This can be especially attractive if you have one or more roommates. By pooling that money together, you can use what is collected on necessary items that each of you can use.
  3. Use online coupons. In today’s digital world, many local deals can be found on your mobile devices through websites apps like Groupon and Living Social. Checking for deals on sources like these can save on many expenses, particularly on entertainment.
  4. Consider microinvesting. Take advantage of a new investment trend geared toward the younger generation. Microinvesting on online apps such as Acorns, Digit or Dobot allows you to invest small amounts of money over time. Acorns, for example, rounds up purchases from a credit card to the nearest dollar and automatically invests that amount. You can also set up recurring daily investments from a checking account.
  5. Include a set savings amount in your budget. As one of your monthly expenses, include a set amount that will go into your savings account each month. This will help ensure that you have a cushion to lean on should unexpected expenses occur.