Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

How to live the life of luxury as a college student

Budgeting is not fun. It’s probably one of the least fun things to do because who doesn’t like spending money? Especially, when Gucci belts and Kylie Jenner lip kits are calling out your credit card’s name.

The struggle of splurging while saving is even harder for college students. Not only are we living on our own for the first time, but we also have to manage to pay for tuition, textbooks, groceries, living expenses, and more. However, tracking finances is something everyone should do. The good news is you can still live the life of luxury and not break the bank by taking these tips into account:

1. Set a monthly limit

Establishing a total amount of how much you can purchase will make you evaluate your choices more. When we spend too much on non-necessities we have to sacrifice in other areas of our lives. Those shoes may be really cute, but are they really worth eating only ramen for a week?

2. Wait, before you spend more than $50

On average consumers spend $5,400 dollars a year on impulse purchases. Want to know if something is really worth breaking open your wallet? Wait two weeks and see if you still want to buy it. If you still want the item after two weeks, then you can be more confident that you aren’t buying something you will use once and then find years later in the back of your closet.

3. Sales don’t mean “It’s a good deal”

Spending $7 on something might seem like nothing at the time, but after a while, these small purchases add up. Let’s say you spend $15 a month on items that you “just had to get because they were 85% off”. Well after a year, you will have spent $180 on things that you probably forgot about after a week.

4. Many stores offer student discounts

Some companies understand that getting a higher education can be a financial constraint and offer promotions and sales for college students. Shop at these stores first before heading elsewhere.

5. Track your spending

If tracking all of your spendings from here on out seems like too much work for you, then track one month of expenses. You will be shocked to find out how many things you’re buying that you don’t need to. Did you really need to get seven Starbucks vanilla lattes last month when you have a perfectly good coffee maker at home? Probably not.

6. Money doesn’t buy happiness

“The best things in life are free” is a cliche for a reason. Don’t forget that sometimes the best things in life are free (or relatively free). Listening to your favorite songs, binging on that Netflix tv show for the third time, reading a book from the library, and hanging out with friends are all cheap things that bring you joy. That’s what it’s all about – being happy. Isn’t that why we spend money in the first place?

7. It is never too late to start

If you impulse bought a new video game today don’t wait until next month to start budgeting. Never forget that each day is a new day.

Brooke Martin can be reached at [email protected] or @bmartin471 on Twitter.

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