Monday, September 26, 2011

With the economy on the rocks, some students may be worried about their finances.  Take a look at this New York Times article from last winter (link below).  

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/27/education/27colleges.html

I know for finances are something my fellow graduate classmates and I worry about.  Some of us have taken out loans and others work on top doing school work.  Some people feel that setting monthly budgets is a helpful money management strategy.  The website Mint.com is a great, free resource for doing just that as well as keeping an eye on your bank account and making sure bills are paid on time.  What are some other money saving strategies?  

Some things are simple, such as making a list when you go to the grocery store and sticking to it.  It's easy to find yourself wanting to buy things that you can live without.  Cutting or printing out coupons is another easy way to save at the store.  However, don't buy something just because you have a coupon for it!  

College is a great place to just hang out with friends and guess what?  This activity is free!  Try making dinner with your friends instead of going to a restaurant or renting a RedBox movie instead of going to the theater.  Sure, nights out are fun and a nice thing to treat yourself to every once in awhile, but if money is tight, staying in can be just as enjoyable.  Chicago also has a number of free things to do- festivals, museums, the zoo, etc.  Go to www.explorechicago.org for some ideas.

Find cheap text books!  Go on to Amazon.com or Half.com to find used textbooks for great prices instead of buying them new at the bookstore.  You can also come to the ARC or go to the library to check books out instead of buying them.  One of my classmates checked his a textbook out at the library for now and figured that if he decided the book would be useful to own, he could always buy it later.

Those are just a few ways to help you start saving!  Feel free to add to the list!

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