Smart Ways to Stretch Your Money During College


When you are in your senior year of high school, everything seems to go by in a blur. The year starts like many others, but accelerates to high speed as senior activities and college plans start coming together. Your final homecoming game, yearbook photos and the pageantry of your senior prom will go by so quickly. 

Along the way, you’ll have to take the standardized tests and spend a lot of hours looking through college brochures so you can see what university might be best for you. Visiting your top school choices is a great idea, as you’ll want to make sure you’re really comfortable there. Finally, you’ll complete your college essay and the applications will be sent off. From there, it’s off to anxious days checking the mail and the excitement when your acceptance letter or letters arrive.

1Living in Off Campus Student Apartments

One of the first ways you can save a lot of money while you attend college is to live in off campus student apartments rather than in the dorms. These off campus dwellings give you a wide range of choices that you simply don’t find in on campus living. Instead of living in cramped conditions in overpriced university owned housing you’ll be able to select an apartment that has far more room and amenities.

The off campus units give each student their own bedroom and bathroom, which is far better than having close quarters shared space for living and sleeping in the dorms, and communal bathrooms far down the hall. Best of all, you can save money by sharing the cost of the apartment with multiple roommates. When the expense is divided that way, you’ll find that rent costs drop considerably.

2Prepare Most of Your Meals at Home

You can save a lot of money during your university years if you learn to cook some simple recipes and then prepare your meals and food at home. In a dorm you’re going to opt for an overly expensive meal plan and food choices that will get old quickly. When you live in an off campus dwelling you’ll have a full kitchen and plenty of room to cook any food you want.

Purchasing raw ingredients, protein and fresh produce on sale at a grocery store or specialty chain will save you substantially each month. From there, go online to look for some top-rated online cooking videos that can soon have you mastering different recipes and ethnic cuisines. Not only will you save a lot of money this way, you’ll be eating more delicious and nutritious meals too.

3It Pays to Live Close to Everything

If you want to trim yet another monthly expense, for a place to live that is within walking distance of the school or on a public transit or shuttle line. By doing so, you can eliminate the need to have a car most of the time you are at college. This will save you money in many ways.

With no car needed, you’ll still get to where you need to go but won’t have to pay for car repairs, registration, parking permits or even car payments themselves. You’ll also avoid the incredibly high cost of gasoline, which is enough to damage any budget now. 

When you head off to college for the first time or for your returning years, you can follow some simple steps to cut your costs and save substantial money each month. By doing this, you’ll be able to enjoy the university experience more and won’t have to work so many hours just to pay the monthly expenses while you go to school.