Hi, I’m Dimitri, CQUniversity alumni and Financial Planner with Soundbridge Financial Services in Rockhampton.
Being a student is one phase in life that you should treasure. But the budgeting side of things can be very stressful and tough. If you haven’t already, check out my blog on surviving on a student budget.
Follow these hacks to make the most of your income as a student. You may have a little bit left over to treat your self.
Eat BEFORE you go shopping
If you go food shopping when you’re full, you’ll be focused on getting what you need, instead of what you want – this will reduce our waistlines and of course our wallets.
Don’t buy just because it’s on SALE
Sales can be the death of our bank accounts. Sale items are designed to say, ‘BUY ME’. If we stick to our guns and consider not buying something just because it is on sale, we will save money.
LIMIT eating out.
Buying takeaway is a great way to throw away money. The exact number of times you can afford to eat out per month comes down to your budgeting skills — if you want to increase the number of times per month, something else will have to give such as streaming services or that odd night out.
Turn your bad habit into A WORLD TRIP.
Smoking is expensive. There are plenty of helpful resources to get you on the right path if you’re ready to kick your habit. Think a packet a is $30. Two packs a week, $60. $60 over a year is $3,120. Just imagine spending your uni holidays exploring the world.
Find accommodation close to campus and WALK
Rethink about owning a car. If you live close to uni and with the intro of uber. Why drive? Get around by using public transport, walk, rideshare or even look at accommodation close to campus so you can walk there. According to reports, the cost of running a small car in 2018 is around $130 per week. This includes fuel, maintenance, rego, insurance and repayments.
Look into a SHAREHOUSE
Take it from me, living on your own is a luxury and one that is expensive. There’s plenty of time to live alone! Some of the best parts of your uni days will be socialising. Living with a big group of friends means you can all share expenses and always have good company! If it’s an option, live at home with your parents which will lead to BIG savings.
Look into PREPAID phones
Mobiles are expensive and so are the long-term plans. It is beneficial to look after your phone and not upgrade – just pre-pay your SMS, calls and internet. In 2020 phones are all the same in terms of basic technology. Opt for a cheaper, older mobile and go prepaid.
Just say the words… I am a STUDENT
Your student and concession cards should be your best mate! Take advantage of the discounts available for students. For example, the CQUni Gym has a highly subsidised membership fee for students.
MINIMAL is best
How good is a spring clean? It can make you feel like a new person. Imagine if you can also make some money from it! De-clutter and you will free your mind. Think of all the items you could sell –furniture you don’t use anymore, your old textbooks, clothes – the options are endless!
Use the Facebook Marketplace or Sell/Buy/Swap, use your own Facebook page or uni bulletin boards – you could even have a garage sale.
BORROW, DON’T BUY – Go to the Library
Libraries are the most underused service on offer. Don’t buy books you will only need for a short period – head for the library instead. Buy the books you do need second-hand through other students.
Coffee at home and fly to Europe
Make your coffee or tea at home and take it to class. Coffee is an average of $5 per day. Over a week it is $35, and over a month it is $140. Over a year it is $1,680. That is a flight to Europe!
OP shop it
Buying retail is expensive and you can get your hands on equally as cool second-hand items at an op shop. Look on Facebook, or in second-hand shops and make it a challenge to find something that suits your wardrobe.
APPLY for a CQUni scholarship!
CQUniversity has a wide range of scholarships and all students should check their eligibility. No matter your situation, everyone needs a helping hand from time to time and CQUni is proud to offer a wide range of scholarships, awards and financial assistance programs. You could also benefit from a student loan and a budgeting tool to help you manage the cost of going to university!
Check out cqu.edu.au/scholarships for more information.
Try these money-saving hacks and help ease your life on a student budget!
This article was written by CQUniversity alumnus Dimitri Kondilis (BFinPlan), Financial Adviser at Soundbridge Financial Services. This advice is general in nature. For specific advice that applies to your individual circumstances, students should seek their own personal advice. Please note that this content does not necessarily reflect the views of CQUniversity.