When you’re still studying at college or university, purse strings are usually tight. Parents may also give limited money for your expenses. Though student loans are to be got easily, as a student you should also manage your pounds wisely. There are many places where you can save without any effort, just by cashing in on your student status. Here are some money tips on how students in the UK can manage money…
Compare Rates on Utility Bills
In case you stay in university accommodation, you won’t have to bother about paying for light, gas, water of your room. But, if you’re renting an apartment, don’t go with what’s already set up there. For example, special types of bulbs reduce power consumption and an efficient boiler will need less gas. Compare rates and choose the cheapest gadgets for systematic money management.
Haggle For Mobile Phone and Internet Deals
Mobile phone contracts are a highly subjective play of credit scores. A good credit score makes it easier to manage money and save on a few pounds. But, even with a poor credit, you should research and haggle for an affordable mobile phone and internet pack deal. Some people use the common trick in the book: they call up their mobile contractor, tell them they’re quitting for a better deal and get a cheaper deal from the company.
Look Up Discounts on Transport around the City
To manage money in a good way is to look for discounts on transport like bus and metro rail. This way, you don’t pay the normal fare for working people but take full advantage of being a uni student. In the UK, students have the opportunity to apply for a 16-25 railcard that gives a 1/3rd discount off rail prices. You’ll have to pay £28 as an annual fee but it’s worth it given the amount you can save.
Think of Switching Your Bank Account
One of the money tips to manage money you have from our financial advisers is to secure a student bank account carrying 0% overdraft interest. So, even if you wish to draw on your bank balance, what you pay is just the principal and no interest. It’s a good idea not to say ‘Yes’ to the first offer that comes your way, especially one with freebies. Once you graduate, shop around for better deals as banks don’t tend to reward loyalty. Enticing benefits are usually geared towards new customers.
Avoid Credit Cards As Much As Possible
Though credit cards improve your credit rating and are helpful when you’re pinched of money, they can also turn into a huge mess. And worrying about that at the age of 18/19 is unnecessary. Credit cards, overdrafts and store cards try to encourage you to spend money you don’t have. If you’re bad with money management and aren’t so confident of paying it all back, avoid credit cards.
Cash is any day better at helping you to manage money than a bright and shiny plastic card. When you’re going on a night out with your friends, carry cash instead of cards so you don’t spend on rounds and regret the following morning. Leave your card at home. Work out a budget for yourself and track of your spending. You could also keep money separately in envelopes with labels like food, clothes, bills, etc.
Set Up Text Alerts For Overdrafts
In order to successfully manage your pounds, you should set up overdraft warnings. Much as those 0% interest bank accounts seem sweet, the minute you exceed the limit, banks come down on you like a bag of bricks. Phone up your bank or use their app to receive text message alerts when you’re closing to hitting the overdraft limit.
Nobody’s telling you to become a star chef overnight, but you should at least learn the basics like making your own cheeseburger with eggs and bacon. The more you can cook for yourself, the less you order takeout, eat out or dine at your campus café. And the more you can manage money.
Bulk up and stock up. Products with a longer shelf life (toiletries, toothpaste) can be safely bought in advance. Make full use of supermarket sweeps and seasonal discounts. If you won’t use much of the stuff, split it up with a friend for cost-effective money management.
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