HOW TO BUDGET
LIKE A BOSS
From: College Students To You!
• I just discovered this app but Mint is an amazing FREE app that keeps track
of everything for you. It categorizes your expenses for you so you can easily
see where most of your money goes. Plus, it automatically syncs with your
bank account so every purchase you make will be shown without you having to
• Don't stay in the bookstore too long! I know there are so many nice things in
there, but more than likely you don't need them and they’re probably cheaper in
• Set a budget, and keep a spreadsheet or use a finance app to help you keep
track of it. I use a spread sheet on my kindle, with my monthly budget,
monthly expenses, income, and savings. The last three have their own page in
the spread sheet. There are apps out there that will notify you when a bill is
due, when you get paid...etc.
• I try to rent as many of my textbooks as possible. I save money in the
summer, when I am not in school. I try to only spend money on important
things, even though it is hard sometimes.
• Save half of each paycheck, you never know when you might need
• Allow yourself to spend a certain amount of money each week on
"fun" activities (going out to eat, new clothes, cabs) and stick to
• It’s tempting to spend a lot of money going out but remember you
have a meal plan and you should take every advantage of it!
• Make a spread sheet on excel or use some fun apps! Open a separate bank
account for savings for a future apartment or new car!
• Don't splurge unless necessary. Don’t go shopping every weekend, go outside
and find other activities. Write down how much you spend!
• I starting working in my sophomore year of college, mainly so I could have a
disposable income. At first I was terrible at budgeting, and I was always
spending everything right away. Then I made a little schedule and starting
keeping a budgeting planner. I only allowed myself to eat out for dinner once a
week, and I started eating food in my condo instead of always eating
lunch/dinner out. I allowed myself snacks on campus, like bagels, but only small
things and only three times a week. (Mainly when I had classes on campus) I
also set a clothing budget and I'd start asking myself "Do I really need that?
Can I wear it to a job interview? Can I wear it to work?" The more questions
I'd ask myself, the more I ended up thinking "I don't need that"
• Don't feel pressure to go out to eat or shop every time the friends on your
floor want to go. If you or your parents are paying for a meal plan, get the
most out of it. Rather than buying boxes of cereal for rushed mornings, I used
the dining center's carry out program to stock up on snacks. Take advantage of
the programming at your school- there will be a lot of free programs and fun
things to do, especially at the beginning of the school year. Once you get the
swing of things in your classes, look for a part-time job that will be flexible
with your class schedule.
• Once you set the budget, don't be afraid to say no; people will understand.
And don't let finances hold you back--there are plenty of free things to do and
ways to go cheap! For example, as a junior I didn't have a meal plan, but I
still loved eating lunch in the food court with my friends. To avoid spending
that extra $10 several times a week, I just brought leftovers in a Tupperware.
My friends joked about how frugal I was, but they know I'm on a tight budget
and would definitely rather I come with my leftovers than not join them because
of money. And if you have to meet up with a professor or professional contact
or someone you don't know well, suggest coffee instead of lunch, for half the