How to manage a Student Loan in the first term

Tips from 4th year, Kate!

 

kr-moneyThis is an exciting time, you suddenly have access to a large amount of money. Yipeee! However, this has got to last you term 1 and probably the holidays.  You may choose to put this towards your rent or use it to live. Regardless managing your money is crucial.

 

Budget

This seems obvious but divide your first loan amount by the number of weeks in first term (11) and you will get a weekly amount.  From this you have to then work out how you spend your money. Once you start doing this for a few weeks you will work out what you do and don’t spend money on, so you can plan for the future.

 

Make your money go further

Discounts and offers are your best friend.

Invest in a 16-25 rail card if you travel often by train.

Buy a NUS card you get tonnes of offers and cheaper tickets at union.

UNIDAYS also an essential app with lots of discounts.

Buy groceries in cheaper supermarkets. It all tastes the same!

 

The Dreaded Overdraft

So it’s not always dreaded, it can save you if you get into a sticky rent situation or need to treat yourself to a train fair home. But… I would highly recommend not going into your overdraft if you can help it. You will feel like you are in a constant battle with the minus sign climbing back up to £0. This is stressful and not something you should have to worry about so avoid the draft!

 

Spread the costs

What I mean by this is don’t be the person who continuously buys the rounds of drinks, pays an extra £10 for a supermarket shop or buys all the communal items for the flat/house. Go ahead and pay for them if you know that people will by you your next drink or pay you back. It’s lovely to be friendly and help out others occasionally but make sure it doesn’t become a habit and impact your loan.

 

Don’t buy all your text books straight away

Buying textbooks straight away could be a very expensive mistake. You can find many online or access them at the Library. Some you will need to buy if the library only has 1. Be clever, is there one book that is used across a number of modules? Yes? Worth it! You’ll find lots of students selling used text books at a cheaper rate so check this out before spending a fortune on amazon!

 

Apps

Apps that do it for you! They breakdown the costs so you can see where your spending the most money and help you keep a track of your spending!

Money Box and Pennies are highly recommended.

 

Just because you have the money it doesn’t mean you have to spend it.

Remember it is a loan you will one day have to pay back!

For further advice, check out the links:

-Reading Student Advice

http://student.reading.ac.uk/essentials/_money_matters/advice.aspx

-Money Saving Expert

http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/students/student-guide
-NUS Money Saving Expert
https://www.nus.org.uk/en/advice/money-and-funding/money-management-tips/

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