If you are a college student and live in the United States, then most likely, the problem of a constant lack of money haunts you, especially if you live far from your parents and must pay for your living and education. In such cases, students often run out of almost all their money by the end of the month, having troubled times.
What is the reason for the lack of money among American students:
- Low income, this applies primarily to students who do not take money from their parents;
- Excessive expenses for living, tuition, etc .;
- The need to pay off a student loan;
- Wrong balance between expense and profit
In this article, we will show you how to control your finances during your student days properly.
1. Build yourself a budget
Let’s say your budget for this month is $ 1000. Instead of spending everything in the early days, you can spread it over the number of days in the month. For example, you can spend no more than $ 10-20 per day on food. If you set yourself a daily spending limit, it will be easier for you to control your budget over time. Permanently save some of your money for emergencies and unplanned events.
2. Find yourself a part-time job
The favorite option for students is to search for a part-time job that could partially or fully cover living expenses. For students, the best areas of work are:
- Restaurant and hotel business. You can work as a waiter, bartender, or receptionist. That is the best option, as it is this area that can provide you with the most flexible schedule;
- Work online. Today, with the development of IT, young people have a tremendous opportunity to work remotely and earn money without leaving their homes. These are primarily areas such as SMM, graphic design, copywriting, online courses, and more. However, most of this work is freelance, and at first, you may not be making a lot.
You are not encouraged to work at work that takes up too much of your time and energy. Therefore, when looking for a job, you should notify your employers of your college schedule.
3. Save your money
If allocating your budget and part-time work doesn’t help you, then try to cut your expenses. First, find out what you are spending the most money on. Next, try to find a cheaper alternative. For example, review what products you use, what transport you use, and whether you are paying too high a price for your stay.
4. Try to find grants and scholarships
For American students, colleges and states are ready to provide a large number of scholarships and grants. Getting a grant will make your life much easier. However, some criteria are required to receive a scholarship, such as a high GPA, high scores in entrance exams, or an exciting start-up project. You are less likely to get scholarships if you have a low GPA, but you should always try! Moreover, most American students do not pay the total amount of their college tuition.
What if your student loan is too large?
One of the main problems of students is the need to repay the loan, which significantly reduces the net income. A high loan burden can lead to a deterioration in the student’s quality of life. Therefore, if the loan burden is too unbearable for you, you should contact the bank (in the case of a private loan) or the United States Department of Education to defer the debt repayment time. Most banks can grant a grace period from 6 months to 2 years. During this time, you can save money and focus on your studies. To get an extension, you need to prove at least one of the following points:
- Financial crisis, or bankruptcy;
- Inability to find a job;
- Your physical disability or illness of a member of your family;
Ask your employer for help
Often banks will allow you to freeze loan repayment until the end of your studies. You can also ask your employer for help. Today, many companies in the United States are ready to help their employees living with student loans. For example, your company may be responsible for repaying a portion of the loan. However, such programs are primarily valid for those who are still studying and have not yet graduated from college/university. If you complete your studies and go full time, companies often stop helping you pay off your student loan as your income increases, and you can pay off your student loan.
There are many ways available to American students today to control their finances. We advise you:
- Calculate your budget in advance;
- Reduce your expense;
- Find a part-time job;
- Find grants or scholarships;
- Ask for a grace period from your lender.