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 The art is not in making money, but in keeping it.

The cost of going to college is increasing and it often comes as a shock to students and their families.

The cost of going to college is increasing and it often comes as a shock to students and their families. Many students experience financial hardship while at college, try not to worry- help is available. College is a very expensive period of your life and one in which can incur a lot of debt. While at college, be aware of the financial aids available to you, contact your local Students’ Union or student support services for advice, help and support.

Managing your money can be tricky, especially if you’ve moved out – from rent to food it’s easy to lose track of how much you’re spending and end up not being able to make ends meet. It can be hard to keep your finances under control when you’re in college, especially if you don’t have a regular income and you are on a tight budget. Managing your money will take a bit of effort at first, but it is worth it in the long run.

Tips for managing your Money:

If you need to cut back on your spending, there are lots of ways to do that:

  • Create a budget.
  • Buying college books can be so expensive, instead contact your local Students’ Union as some of them may run second hand book schemes on campus.
  • Always ask for a student discount, even if one isn’t advertised.
  •  Buy in bulk, it’s much cheaper in the long run.
  •  Keep your eyes peeled for special offers.
  •  Never shop when you’re hungry or you’ll buy unnecessary items.
  •  Always make up a shopping list.
  •  Go home for lunch if you’re near enough or bring lunch to college. It’s much cheaper.
  •  Check out second-hand shops for everything from clothes to books to furniture.
  •  If you work and pay tax, you might be entitled to a tax refund so always do a tax return (not as scary as it sounds!).
  •  Look after your accommodation so that you get all of your deposit back at the end of the year.

What not to do

Don’t ignore the debts. They won’t go away that way. They will go away eventually if you deal with them. If you are worried or anxious Debt can seem like a really scary thing, and it can often get people down or make them very anxious.  If money problems are getting to much for you,  there are people that can help, and people who can just listen. Contact your local Students’ Union, counselling services on campus or MABS ( money advice and budgeting service).

USI will be launching the ‘Money Matters’ – Student Finance Guide  in September.

The National Consumer Agency  have developed a section of their website to help with your personal finances during college,  please visit http://nca.ie/usi

 

 

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