One of the craziest mantras I have heard about spending money is: “Go ahead and spend it because you can always make more of it.” We all need it and we all spend it, but not everyone is a natural at managing it.
Unfortunately for students, college is not just about studying, but is also the time to learn how to budget. While Starbucks and Chipotle may sounds good every day, it’s a budget breaker for most students. With new responsibilities and freedom, students need to make wise choices on how to spend their money.
Given their busy schedules, this is not always top of mind and is certainly not an easy topic for you to help educate them about. In a previous blog article, my colleague Caitlin shared that social media is one of the best ways to communicate with college students.
This is not only because it is an accessible way to reach them, it’s also a way to provide information that is interactive and easily digestible from their mobile devices. For example, regularly sharing quick money saving and budgeting tips on social media is a great way to reach students between classes or breaks.
Nelnet’s Strategies To Save Money contains a lot of these helpful tips. These are just three of my favorites:
- Don’t spend money to relieve stress. Fight the “I’m so stressed about exams that I’m going to browse around Target” urge and take a run through the park instead. Your bank account and your heart will appreciate it.
- Avoid impulse purchases such as coffee or candy. I walk by three coffee shops from my parking garage to the office. To combat this, I make sure to make coffee at home and have in hand to fight off the temptations of a pumpkin spice latte.
- Go to see a movie in the afternoon rather than in the evening. Movies are always so crowded at night. I love going to a matinee and feeling like I’m in my own home theater.
Healthy spending habits are key to staying financially fit. Nelnet offers other resources for students to help manage their budget, avoid scams, and understand student loans. What are some ways you are helping your students with financial literacy? Leave a comment below. We would love to hear from you.