6 Common Student Budget Killers and How to Streamline Them!

Headed to college? Then you may want to know these 6 Common Student Budget Killers and How to Streamline Them! Great tips for how to save money in college!

6 Common Student Budget Killers and How to Streamline Them!

Until I went to college, I had never met anyone in the military. Then, at 18, I started a new life in a new city near Los Angeles and met people from all walks of life. In my freshman class, there were several men who were just beginning college after finishing tours overseas. One of my dorm-mates graduated to pursue medical school in the Navy.

I am so lucky to have met these people because they’ve opened my eyes to a side of life that I would never otherwise experience or understand. I am amazed by and thankful for their persistence, dedication, hard work ethic, and openness to answer my curiosity-driven questions. What I’ve learned from them will be a part of my everyday decisions for the rest of my life.

I’m no military expert, and I’m not sure what kind of advice to provide to a military family, BUT, I was a college student, and that is an experience that I can share. Maybe you know someone who is just finishing a tour and starting college in a new city. Maybe not. Regardless of who you are and who I am, the inspiration for this post comes from the military professionals who are just about to start college at a new school.

As a thank you for sharing so much of what you’ve learned, here is a list of what I’ve learned about the most common budget killers—for all students, military and others alike.

6 Common Student Budget Killers and How to Streamline Them

Eating Out
After a long day, it’s way too easy to run to order your favorite takeout or gab a burrito and sandwich. It’s also easy to run into a college dining hall where the food is cooked and prepared for you. Unfortunately, this lifestyle gets expensive quickly and is tough to maintain on a student budget. Instead of eating out, plan your meals on a weekly basis. Make cooking a group activity with your roommates, friends, and fellow students. You’ll establish good habits for the long-term while saving money in the short term.

In Los Angeles, apartments can cost between $1,000 and $2,000. Imagine this kind of expense when you’re in school, with no income. While in school, you absolutely need to live with roommates. You might even find it less expensive to rent a room in a house.

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The cost of books can be over-the-top. Instead of shopping at your campus bookstore, trim down your expenses. Shop online to buy used and to sell your previously owned books. In fact, head over here to Amazon where you can rent or buy eTextbooks! Find a study group and share your books with them. Look for international editions. Eventually, as you continue to buy and sell your books, you might, over time, break even.

Party Supplies
Everyone needs to have fun in college. Everyone can also afford to have fun in college. Instead of taking on the burden of hosting a party, have a potluck and ask everyone to contribute. For all of you hard-working students, you deserve to take a break.

I learned to always buy furniture second-hand. After four years at school, it’s likely that you’ll move. Or, you may want new furniture when you start a new phase of your life. In the meantime, try to make the most out of a few inexpensive and basic necessities. When you buy these items, make a plan to eventually sell them. This is where Craigslist and Goodwill come in!

Moving and storage expenses
College students tend to do a lot of moving. To the best extend possible, plan to collaborate on these costs with your peers. Share storage units instead of buying your own. Share transportation costs instead of doing your own driving.