Financial Tips

For high schoolers looking at college

Follow these simple rules and tips about managing expenses in college and your financial future will be a breeze!

Tip #1: Take Charge of your money by making concise goals and plans to reach those goals. This also helps with tip #2

Tip #2: Stay Organized. Payments, bills, and financial responsibility will only get more high stakes and more overwhelming. Keeping records and planning ahead will keep the payments in college lined up.

Tip #3: Protect your personal info by only giving it to reliable trust worthy sources.Check all credit cards for unauthorized use and shred any papers with your financial information on it. This will only become more important as technology evolves and makes it easier for fraud and identity theft to occur.

Tip #4:Understand your financial aid. This could be vital to keeping your college education going. Check to see if it needs to be renewed and if the obligations are subject to change.

Tip #5: Continuously check for new aid like scholarships and low interest loans. This will only take the burden off of you when you finish your education. (HOWEVER, Look at tip #6 in order to stay alert about the danger of loans)

Tip #6: Use loans as a last result. Scholarships are essentially free money where as loans must be paid off. Only use them as a last resort to avoid high interest payments and an education you can't really afford.

Tip #7: If you NEED a job to support your education, find one on campus. (Tip 7.5: Be weary of getting a job. They can be demanding and distract from your main focus of school) They will be closer to your dorm or apartment and will allow flexible hours to fit your academic year.

Tip #8: Take the time to think about a career. Make a resume and take advantage of the career center so you can enter a work place targeted to your education. Then figure out an average salary after taxes to plan for your future.

Tip #9: Save on snacks. Stick to your meal plan and only buy snacks in bulk from the grocery store to avoid eating out and using expensive vending machines. Every little bit counts!

Tip #10: Compare the cost of an apartment to the cost of living in a dorm. Be sure to include internet, transportation cost, phone bills and other aspects you may forget to include in the cost of an apartment. To make things simple, just make a list of all expenses side by side and decide on the more financially beneficial option.

Ti #11: Avoid the peer pressure to spend money. Keep track of all spending and look into low cost events. Don't be afraid to say "No I can't afford that." You are a low budget college kid!!

Tip #12: SEPARATE NEEDS FROM WANTS: This is HUGE. If you can effectively do this and avoid making rash spending decisions on snacks and clothes you don't really need, lots of money can be saved and put toward other more important aspects of college.

Tip #13: Build good credit in order to allow you to make big purchases later on in life. Use the tips previously discussed to do this effectively and with ease.

Tip #14: Pay Yourself first. By simply putting in a little bit of money each week or each month into a savings account, the money will gain interest and set you up extremely nicely for the future.