Getting Financially Fit This Year
Heading back to school often means big purchases being made in the near future. From paying rent, getting a gym membership, or splurging on some new dorm decor, college often comes with a need to save money + budget wisely. Far too often, college women feel alone in their financial journeys + don’t talk to each other nearly enough about finances As young women learning how to maneuver this new ~adult~ world, it is so important to talk to each other about finances + empower each other along the way. Some tips to help you take control of your finances this semester can include–
#1] Set concrete goals
Before you head back to school this semester, take some time to write down your goals on paper. Want to go on a fun girls trip over winter break? Write down a game plan to get there. Writing down goals of how much money you want to save or spend each week will help you be mindful of how much money you have + reach your end goal quicker!
#2] Learn budgeting 101
Do you have a monthly budget created? If not, it’s a great way to keep tabs on the income you have coming in each month + the expenses that are going out, to make sure you are always in the green.
First, you’ll want to figure out what all your monthly regular expenses are — utilities, rent, groceries, even that Spotify subscription. Make a monthly average of how much your regular expenses are + to have an idea of how much you are spending each month. Then, you’ll need to figure out how much your average income is + record it. You’ll also want to be sure to leave room in your budget for variables that may come up like entertainment, gifts, or grabbing bites with friends! Lastly, total your income + your expenses ++ adjust your expenses if needed to make sure your income is higher than the expenses. Each month, be sure to review your budget + make sure you are on track!
#3] Take advantage of student discounts
Many fitness studios + gyms have awesome student discounts for college students. Need to do some fitness gear shopping? Be sure to always have your student ID on hand when you’re out shopping + find out if a store has a student discount. Stores like Athleta now offer great student discounts! Check out more stores with student discounts here!
#4] Be mindful of your spending habits
That iced coffee every day adds up! Little habits like buying coffee everyday can add up — being mindful of where you spend your money the most can make a big difference + save you a lot of money throughout the year. Look into ways you can make your coffee at home [like this DIY Bulletproof coffee recipe!] or try packing a lunch instead of buying one between classes to save some money.
#5] Be on the lookout for great deals
There are so many great websites + apps that can help you find that best deals going on for the items you need. Sites like RetailMeNot are always a great place to check out before making a purchase, or you can add the Chrome extension, Honey, which automatically searches for coupons when you shop online!. Checking multiple stores + comparing prices is also a great way to make sure that you are getting the best price.
#6] Treat yourself
That new CHAARG tank you’ve been eyeing… buy it! It’s okay to splurge every now + then! Before you make a purchase though, check your budget to make sure there is room. Being on a budget does not mean you can’t have any fun or get nice things for yourself, but you want to be mindful with *extra* purchases so they don’t cause problems in your budget. Unhealthy money mindsets are similar to unhealthy food mindsets. Treating yourself allows you to bring joy + happiness into your days. As long as it is in moderation ++ intention, it’s a perfectly healthy thing to do.
Want to learn more about reclaiming your power in managing your money? Check out this great podcast about young women + financial planning! We can’t wait to see you conquer your finances this semester + feel empowered in doing so!