College is one of the biggest financial decisions you may make in your lifetime. So, make it easier on yourself by budgeting accordingly during your college years. Sure, you want to make memories to last a lifetime but not ones that will financially impact you for the rest of your life.

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For starters, Eric Nelson suggests you write down your anticipated expenses into a spreadsheet so you can map out each of your semesters. Textbooks, meal plans, supplies, and food will likely be the biggest culprits. Next, you should plan for the unexpected expenses like: last minute tickets to campus events, alcohol (if you’re above 21 years of age!), and late night snack runs. 

If pre-planning your expenses isn’t enough, you can consider a part-time on-campus job to help supplement your expenses. These jobs usually have flexible hours to work around student schedules, and can definitely help bolster your resume while you’re at it.

Lastly, try to incorporate “no spend” days into your weekly schedule. Do you always get Starbucks before your 8 AM lectures? Why not try and brew a cup in your dorm instead? Or maybe you have a favorite lunch spot on campus- try and eat out only once or twice a week, you’ll be surprised at how much money you can save!

For more tips on how to save money, visit Eric Nelson’s blog for more articles and tips.