2012 financial survival guide web

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2012 financial survival guide web

  1. 1. Financial Survival guide 2012
  2. 2. Disclaimer Victoria University uses all reasonable skill and care to ensure theDecember 2011 information contained in this publication is accurate at the time ofNote: The Student Allowance, Student Loan (living printing. However, matters covered in this publication are subject tocosts) and the threshold for the Community a continuous process of review and to unanticipated circumstances.Services Card are adjusted annually on 1 April The University therefore reserves the right to make any changesand increase slightly. without notice. So far as the law permits, the University accepts no responsibility for any loss suffered by any person due to reliance (either in whole or in part) on the information contained in this publication, whether direct or indirect, and whether foreseeable or not.
  3. 3. Financial Survival Guide 2012 Co nt rol lin g Yo ur Mo ne y. . . . . . . . . . 2 My Bu dg et . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 My Sp en din g . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 A dif fe re nt ap pr oa ch to bu dg et ing . . . . 6 Cu sto mis e yo ur ba nk ac co un t. . . . . . . 7 Ba nk ing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Liv ing at Ho me . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Liv ing in th e Ha lls . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Fla tti ng . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Tr an spo rt. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16Go t a Pr obl em ? . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18St ud yL ink . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20W ork ing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21Su rvi va l. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22W ord s of W isd om . . . . . . . . . . . . 23A Fin al W ord . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24Co nt ac t de ta ils . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Financial Survival Guide 2012 1
  4. 4. Sample Weekly Budget ers) (for a student flatting with 2–3 oth es? What are your weekly expens What is your weekly income? Essentials Student Loan Rent $15 5 $169.51 Living costs Power $20 or Phone/Internet $10 Cellphone $5 Student Allowance $167.83 Groceries $70 Full entitlement, net (under 24) $40.00 Toiletries $6 Accommodation benefit Transport* $35 Appliance rental $4 Bank fees $2 Contents/liability insurance $6 3 Subtotal: $31 Extras Snacks/lunches $20 Entertainment $30 Subtotal: $50 3 $169.51 Total: $36 Total: 7.83 $20 or *based on GO Wellington 30-day fare Weekly shortfall = $155–$193 s could total $5,800 to $7,300. Over two trimesters (37 weeks) thi n (living costs) will not cover all your weekly The Studen t Allowance and/or the Student Loa expenses.How will you make up the difference?Savings from summer?Family help?Reduced expenses? per hourPart-time work? Minimum wage is $13 ) 10 hours work is $113.70 after tax (M code ) 15 hours work is $170.55 after tax (M code
  5. 5. How will you pay for these extra costs? Claim the Student Loan course-relat ed costs of $1,000? Access a tertiary account overdraft of $500 to $1,000? Personal savings and/or family hel p? Sample Academic Year CostsIn addition to your weekly expenses, there are other costs you may face duringTrimesters One and Two (37 weeks). These can include:Course related costs: student notes/books/stationery/printin g $900Bond/flat set up $1,500Trips home $300Clothing $400Emergencies $500Sport/birthdays $400TOTAL $4,000Problem: Despite using the Student Loan or getting an allow ance, your totalshortfall for weekly living costs plus all other expenses could add up to more than$9,000 per annum.Solution: Plan ahead! Use our worksheet or come and see us. We’ll work out abudget with you and discuss your options. Financial Survival Guide 2012 3
  6. 6. This is available as an Excel spreadsheet on our websiteEstimate your regular expenses and your less frequent expenses over the course of a year.WeeklyIncome ExpensesStudent Allowance $ Rent $Student Loan (living costs) $ Power $Part-time work wages $ Phone/internet $Benefit $ Cellphone $Weekly family support $ Groceries $Regular scholarship payments $ Toiletries $Other $ Transport $ Insurance $ Appliance rental $ Debts/hire purchases $ Bank fees $ Snacks/lunches $ Entertainment $Weekly income total $ Weekly total expenses: $ × 37 weeks $ × 37 weeks $YearlyIncome ExpensesSavings $ Course costs (books, stationery, $One-off scholarship payments $ photocopying, printing) $One-off family help $ Bond, connection fees $Tax refund $ Flat items (furniture, bedding) $Student Loan (course-related costs) $ Vehicle (reg, WOF, repairs, insurance) $Bank overdraft $ Doctor/chemist $Other $ Dentist/optometrist $ Clothes/footwear $ Haircuts $ Toll calls $ Trips home $ Sports/clubs/gym $ Birthdays/special occasions $ Newspaper/magazine/Sky TV $ Insurance (if paid yearly) $Total infrequent income $ Total infrequent expenses $Grand total income for the year $ Grand total expenses for the year: $ Looking impossible? See page 6 for another approach.4 Victoria University of Wellington
  7. 7. What kind of spender are you?Jake Valerie Derek Elizabeth-> Subway, Burger King, - Two flat whites per - Two lattes per week - Coffee and muffin sushi several times a weekday - DVD rental once per week week - Muffin, snack most - Friday night gig and - One drink on- or Coke daily V days one drink only Saturday night- Snacks from bakery - Movie on Tuesday - Cheap DVD rental or convenience shop - Drinks on Friday night a few times a week - Café lunch on Sunday- Drinks on Friday and Saturday night Fish and chips on- SaturdayWeekly spend:$145 $120 $40 $25Over two trimesters:$5,365 $4,400 $1,480 $925What’s essential for you to enjoy yourself?Think about how you can control your spending.Per week: For most of us, taking control of yourCoffee/soft drinks $ money means leaving the EFTPOS cardTakeaways/snacks $Movies $ behind and putting a small amountGigs/clubs $ of cash, which your budget allows,DVDs $Café meals/restaurants $ in your wallet for the week to coverTotal $ personal spending on snacks, drinksDecide in advance how much you can afford to spend and entertainment.on extras and which treats to allow yourself! Financial Survival Guide 2012 5
  8. 8. What is your weekly income? $Student LoanStudent AllowanceWagesScholarshipFamily Help Action plan: minus - alculate how much you need to earn from C part-time work to meet all your expenses.What do you need to pay? $ - ecide how much you can spend on extras like DFigure out what commitments you have and what the drinks and going out. Rather than use EFTPOS,average weekly cost for each is. For example: withdraw this amount in a lump sum for the Rent, power, phone, internet week. Essential transport Cellphone - rganise your bank accounts so that you can O Insurance control your budget. Gym - heck your account online regularly and look C Credit car/loan/hire purchase payments at your EFTPOS spending-is it more than you can afford? Also check your bank fees. equals - onsider yourself a small business. pay C accounts when they are due and make sureWhat is left for these? $ the flat’s accounts aren’t falling behind.GroceriesPersonal toiletriesAnything left for these?EntertainmentCoffee/snacks/drinksSportsBirthdaysClothes/haircutsTravel during holidays Anticipate your costs Budget to pay rent and bills first. Control your extra spending.
  9. 9. Using your bank account(s) wisely can be a verypowerful budgeting toolMost banks will let you have a number of online-only savings accounts. You can set them up to holdmoney for the things you need to save up for long-term, so that you know how much you are allowed tospend now, without getting in trouble later on when the bills are due.Automatic transfers and automatic payments can make life very easy. The student finance advisers arehappy to meet with you to put together your own system. $169 from Studylink $150 from wages $50 from parents Current account$155 automatic payment $80 auto transfer for $40 auto transfer for $94 left in the accountfor rent monthly bills infrequent costs for EFTPOS to use(same day as StudyLink) (same day as wages) (same day as wages) on food, snacks and entertainment. Transfer when needed Bills account Savings accountPower Course costs, shoes, clothes, haircuts, specialPhone/internet occasions, trips home, dentist, medical,Cellphone emergencies, sports, etc.Contents insuranceBus pass Financial Survival Guide 2012 7
  10. 10. Remember to change your existing bank account to a student package. These accounts charge no base ortransaction fees. There will be a monthly fee of $2 to $3 for an overdraft facility. Renew the account by theend of March each year by showing the bank your Confirmation of Study.ATMs on Kelburn CampusWestpac • Cotton Building, Gate 6, close to computer shopNational Bank • von Zedlitz Building, front of building on Kelburn Parade by traffic light • National Bank entrance in front of the Student Union BuildingA word about overdrafts: This is debt.It should not be used to enhance your social life. Ideally it is for cash flow issues, ie. your power bill is duethe day before you get paid, or an emergency has come up. At times like these, using an overdraft can behelpful. It is not a substitute for savings.A word about credit cards: This is expensive debt.It should always be avoided!A word about debit cards: These can be cool!A debit card works like an EFTPOS card, but it can also be used anywhere that credit cards are accepted(eg. online). Unlike a credit card, it only uses the money you already have in your bank account. Mostbanks offer debit cards with a fee of about $10 per year. - e careful! The banks want your money. Those overdrafts need to be repaid. B - NZ, ASB, and Kiwibank offer budgeting software with their online banking. A This is a great way to keep track of where your money has gone and set up a spending plan. - nline banking is free and it’s a great way to track your expenses. Check your O account regularly. - any banks offer mobile text alerts. This could help you to know when youre M about to run out of money. - eware of ATM costs involved in using another bank’s machine-usually 75 cents B to $1. - now your balance! If you dont have sufficient funds it will cost you dearly. K Most banks charge honour ($15 to $35) and dishonour fees ($7 to $9). - sk to have a ‘hard limit’ on your account. Otherwise you could accidentally go A $300 into overdraft without even realising it.
  11. 11. Do you live at home and don’t have to pay board? We recommend that you don’t claim the living costs ofthe Student Loan. You’re in the enviable position of limiting your Student Loan debt.Think about your budget and how much you need to save over the summer and/or how much you needto earn from a regular part-time job to pay for your personal costs. Most students could cover theirexpenses with about $6,000—that’s not too hard to earn from summer work plus a part-time job duringthe trimesters.Sample budgetWeekly: Extras (during two trimesters):Transport—bus pass $35 Clothing $300Snacks/drinks $25 Haircuts $150Entertainment $45 Books, stationery $900Cellphone $5 Birthdays/sports $300Total $110Total x 37 weeks $4,070 Total $1,650Grand total $5,620 don’t use debt for lifestyle. Earn it before you spend it. The Dangers of EFTPOS We can’t say this enough: EFTPOS is a terrible thing when it com es to controlling your spending or sticking to budget. Most people don’t: - lise how much they are spendi rea ng - add up their daily totals - k at their bank statements loo - ide in advance what amount the dec y can afford to put on EFTPOS Financial Survival Guide 2012 9
  12. 12. Living in the HallsLiving in a Hall of Residence can be more expensive than living in a flat, but not always. Some of thefinancial advantages to living in the halls are:- No transport costs—halls are generally within walking distance to Kelburn, Te Aro, and Pipitea campuses.- The contracts correspond to the academic year, unlike flatting (where you might be committed to paying rent starting in January, or for the whole summer when you might not plan to be in Wellington).- In many cases, electricity/internet/food is included in the room rate, so there are not as many costs to keep track of.- You won’t get stuck paying extra because of irresponsible flatmates.Despite this, the halls have their own financial challenges. The money StudyLink provides is not enough tocover the hall costs, and hall fees are normally paid in four advance instalments instead of weekly.An example of a payment schedule for a catered single room: Need to pay: Max help from Max help from Student Student allowance Loan living costsEarly* $600 (fees/deposit) $0 $0By 24 Feb $3,130 (1st instalment) $0 $0By 27 Apr $2,817 (2nd instalment) $1,454 $1,186By 6 Jul $3,130 (3rd instalment) $2,078 $1,695By 7 Sep $2,817 (4th instalment) $1,870 $1,525 Total: $12,494 Total by 7 Sep: $5,402 Total by 7 Sep: $4,406After 7 Sep - $2,288 $1,867* late October upon accepting offer.In a typical case like this, you will need to have at least $7000–$8000 for the year coming fromsomewhere else. Parents? Savings? Scholarship? Work? And then there are other things to pay for likecellphone top-ups, toiletries, snacks, special occasions …The Student Finance Advisers are happy to discuss a financial plan with you.
  13. 13. Bond and advance rentBondThe landlord can ask for up to four weeks’ rent as bond, but two weeks is the average. The law requiresthat the bond is lodged with the Tenancy Services Centre. You must complete a bond lodgement form. Thisis signed by you and the landlord or property management company.Ideally everyone in the flat signs the lease agreement and everyone lodges their own share of the bonddirectly with Tenancy Services. This makes it easier when one person moves out. That person’s namecomes off the lease and the new person is added. The person leaving completes the Bond Refund or BondTransfer form and Change of Tenant form.WarningStudents often move into an existing flat and pay the bond to the person moving out, which means youhave no guarantee of getting your bond back. In these cases we strongly recommend that you get a writtenreceipt for the payment. If you pay it by direct bank transfer, identify it as bond on the payment details. It’salso a good idea to sign a flat sharing agreement. Your name should not be added to the lease if you arenot paying the bond to the landlord or Tenancy Services Centre directly.If you are the head tenant, and your flatmate(s) have not signed the lease, protect yourself by getting themto sign a flat sharing agreement.Advance rentLandlords are not permitted to ask for more than two weeks’ rent in advance. Once the advance rent runsout, more rent is due.Total cost of moving inHow much do you need to save? Based on a weekly rent of $155:Conservative Mid-range High$620—Two weeks’ bond and two $930—Three weeks’ bond, two $1,085—Four weeks’ bond, twoweeks’ rent. weeks’ advance rent and letting weeks’ advance rent and letting fee (one week’s rent). fee (one week’s rent).PLUS: shifting costs, furnishings (bed, desk, drawers, kitchen things, etc.). The set-up costs will varygreatly depending on how much you may already have. If you need to buy most items and are happy to getsecond-hand goods, $500 to $1,000 will get you the basics.TIP: Don’t leave finding a flat until it’s too late. Secure a flat by mid-January. Rentdemand and prices peak in February. Financial Survival Guide 2012 11
  14. 14. ElectricityIt’s just as important to budget for the power bill as it is to pay the rent—we estimate $20 per weekper person. Have the money set aside so no one gets caught out when the bill arrives—if you make thepayment on time you’ll get the prompt payment discount!Tips:- Make sure your meter is being read. The bill will indicate whether it is based on a reading or an estimate. If it is estimated too low, you will be in for a huge payment when the meter is finally read. You can provide the power company with a reading yourself.- Visit www.powerswitch.org.nz to compare rates for different electricity providers.- Powershop (www.powershop.co.nz) is prepaid, which means you can’t get caught with a bill you can’t afford.- You can set up fortnightly automatic payments that are the same throughout the year so that you don’t get surprised by a huge bill in the winter.- Some suppliers charge a bond. Usually, this can be avoided if you sign up for a direct debit or automatic repayment option.- Not only is it annoying to get your power disconnected, it can also be expensive—for example, a $55 disconnection fee plus a $125 reconnection fee!- The biggest use of electricity is water heating. To keep the bill low, watch those hot showers and use only cold water for washing clothes.- ww.energywise.govt.nz has more tips about conserving electricity. wPhone and internetExample package: $93 per month for landline and 20 GB broadband, with free connection (if the wiring isin place) and no term contract.Toll callsIf you are splitting the bill with other people, it can be tricky to figure out who owes what for toll calls. Some companiesoffer individual PINs to keep track. Some flats set up a toll bar so that no toll calls can be made on the landline—it’seither calling cards or cellphones. (Make sure 0900 numbers are blocked)Shop around for the best deals in your area. Some providers in Wellington include Telecom, Telstra Clear,Orcon, Woosh and Actrix.What will you need? Landline?* Toll calls? How many GBs of internet? Pay TV as well?*(There are a few options for broadband without landline)Shop around and know what you’re signing up for … Connection fees? Contract periods? What happens ifyou terminate the contract? What happens if you go over the internet data allowance?Wellington City has free wifi access in the most central bits of town, and Victoria University has free wifiaccess for students at all their campuses.CellphonesWe recommend avoiding cellphone contracts and sticking with prepay. Contracts are commitments youmay not be able to afford. Prepay is cheaper and safer.12 Victoria University of Wellington
  15. 15. Insurance - ou get home to find that Y somebody has stolen yourContents insurance helps to replace your belongings if they are laptop, your iPod, and yourstolen or damaged. You might only have to pay $250 to replace guitar. Can you live withoutyour things rather than $2500. them? If not, can you afford toLiability insurance usually comes with contents insurance. This replace them?pays for damage you accidentally do to other people’s property.If your name is on the lease agreement for a flat, you could beheld responsible for any damage done to the property, even ifit’s not your fault. Liability insurance could save you from owingthousands if something goes wrong.Example package: $20 per month to cover up to $10,000 of - he vac Tpossessions, plus full liability cover. uum cle knocks a la aner cordShop around. Get quotes from your bank and from insurance mp into a l window, bre argecompanies. aking it. It $1,100 to re will cost place.Note: Your insurance can only provide cover for your belongings and damagethat you are liable for. It will not cover your flatmates, and your flatmate’sinsurance will not cover you. s hing machine ha- n electrical fault starts A - he flat was T ing. By the a fire in your room. It is put - ou accidental Y ly spill hot oil on been slowly leak tices, it has out quickly-but fire, smoke, the floor, which time someone no melts the lino. age to the and water damaged almost It will cost $1,500 done major dam to fix. hich will cost everything you have. floor below it, w e tenant is $18,000 to fix. Th liable!Great flatting resourcesAccommodation Servicewww.victoria.ac.nz/accommodationVictoria University’s Accommodation Service has a lot of information, including flat listings. Experiencedstaff are ready to talk about any difficulties students may be experiencing with accommodation, such asdifficult flatmates or dealing with landlords. They are open 9am–5pm, all year round.Department of Building and HousingFor information on tenancy issues, including all the relevant forms to download, go to www.dbh.govt.nz.Look at their useful flatting guide Flatting 101, on www.dbh.govt.nz/flatting-101sorted.co.nzwww.sorted.org.nz/life-stages/starting-out/going-flattingThe sorted website has detailed information about the financial side of flatting. Financial Survival Guide 2012 13
  16. 16. FoodThe amount that people spend on food really depends on their habits. People who cook all of their ownmeals, eat a lot of basic foods, and avoid expensive ingredients may spend only $30 per week. People whocook with fancier ingredients may spend around $80 per week. People who frequently buy food on the gocan easily spend $150 or more per week.Buying groceries and cooking is the best way to save a lot of money.We have a detailed shopping list and matching recipes on our websitewww.victoria.ac.nz/st_services/finadvice/surviving/flataccount.aspxMoney saving Tips- ou can get excellent prices for fruits and vegetables at the Sunday Markets (7am to noon) Y at the carpark on Willis Street opposite uStay McKenzies and at Waitangi Park, next to Te Papa.- hop wisely: buy what’s on special and stick to the essentials. S- uy enough at the supermarket to cover your basic needs-a list is helpful. B- isits to Fix or dairies are expensive. V- ating on campus is expensive. You can save money by bringing lunch from home. E There are microwaves at some places around campus to heat up your food.Buying groceries onlineIf you and your flatmates are too busy to go to the supermarket and/or don’t have convenient transport,consider ordering your groceries online at www.woolworths.co.nz/homeshopping. They have a useful‘Shopping on a Budget List’.You can choose your delivery day and time, and the cost is $13.25 if your order value is between $100 and$200. It’s a cost-effective way of doing the shopping. The service is available in central Wellington andmost suburbs. Payment is by credit/debit card or you can set up a direct debit from the flat account.Students who have used this service have told us it works really well and saves the flat money.Cook ! You will save moneyand fuel your brain14 Victoria University of Wellington
  17. 17. Flat accountIf you are flatting, you will have to think about how to set up the flat account so that the rent and bills getpaid on time and everyone is paying their share.We recommend- On a weekly basis put aside the rent money, as well as money towards the power and phone accounts. If the rent is $155 per week, put aside at least $185 per week.- Think about setting up a separate account that all flatmates pay into on a weekly basis. The rent gets paid to the landlord out of this account by automatic payment and the power and phone bills get paid by internet or phone banking. Any other shared bills such as SKY and internet can be budgeted for and paid the same way. example, if you bank with The National Bank you can set up a second current account as a joint For account with one or two of your flatmates (it will have no monthly account, transaction or automatic payment fees). A suggestion is to request a new account number to keep your personal and flat account information separate. We recommended you set up the new account so that at least two signatures are required to make any cash withdrawals. This will provide better control over the account and two signatures are a safer option.- One of the account holders should take responsibility: paying the power and phone bills on time, and checking that everyone is making their weekly payments.- Put the flat account bank statement on the fridge door.If you anticipate your costs and put the money aside for it, you and your flat willstay out of strife !Why this system works- With everyone paying the rent into one account, you can check that no one is missing their rent payment. Landlords don’t always check their accounts promptly and you can find out six weeks later that someone wasn’t paying their share. This can become a problem for the whole flat.- It can be hard to find $50 or $60 from one week’s income to put towards bills, and it’s no fun chasing up flatmates to do the same.- With everyone paying their share of power/phone/internet on a weekly basis, it’s less of a problem if someone moves out unexpectedly. You won’t be left out of pocket.The Student Finance Advisers can help you andyour flatmates set up your flat budget, discuss theflat account, get flat sharing agreements sorted Some banks offer free online bank accountsand signed, and give you practical advice on a wide that can be accessed by multiple people. If your bank doesrange of issues (contact details are on page 25). n’t offer a solution you like for your flat account (for example, charging fees), shop around with other bank s.
  18. 18. BusWellington buses charge a fare for every trip. Paying cash is always the most expensive option. For regularusers, we recommend using a Snapper Card, and possibly a 30-day pass, depending on your use.A trip within one zone costs $1.60 on Snapper ($2.00 cash)A trip within two zones costs $2.58 on Snapper ($3.50 cash)A trip within three zones costs $3.44 on Snapper ($4.50 cash)See the Metlink website to figure out how many zones your bus trips will be: www.metlink.org.nzGO Wellington 30 Day PassFor $140, you can travel on Go Wellington busses as much as you want within Zones 1–3 for 30 days(purchase from Snapper outlets). That comes to $35 per week. Think about how many trips you will takeeach week and work out how much it will cost. Would you save money by using a 30-day pass?For more information, contact Metlink:0800-801-700www.metlink.org.nzTrainFrom/To Ten Trip MonthlyPetone and Lower Hutt/Wellington $36.80 $115.80Upper Hutt/Wellington $68.00 $204.00Porirua/Wellington $47.20 $141.60Monthly tickets can be ordered online, usually three days prior to month end. Tranz Metro offer a free textmessage service called Metro Alert to advise of delays of more than 15 minutes.For more information, contact Tranz Metro:0800-801-700www.tranzmetro.co.nz Snapper Cards co st $10 to buy, bu if you use the bu t s much at all, they will save yo u a lot of money .16 Victoria University of Wellington
  19. 19. Cable carSingle ticket (student fare) $1.0010 trip ticket $9.0020 trip ticket $17.0030 trip ticket $24.00**Best buy—savings of $6 over single tickets.CarA car can be convenient for shopping and for trips home (especially if you are from the lower half of the NorthIsland) but they are expensive to maintain and can blow your budget. Registration, WOF, repairs and insuranceoften add up to $1,000 or more per year. For most students, a bus/train/flight home is still cheaper than runninga car. It is also cheaper to use the bus/train to get to university if you are not in walking distance.WarningIt is very hard to find parking on campus and the parking wardens police the streets constantly.Parking costsParking on most streets close to the University campus requires a coupon if you are parking for morethan two hours. The coupon parking areas are clearly signposted. Coupons cost $7.50 per day and can bepurchased from Unistop on Kelburn Campus, most dairies, and New World supermarkets.Most inner city suburbs require a residents parking permit which cost $115 a year. You can get one from theCity Council offices in Civic Square.ScooterScooters and Mopeds with an N-class registration (under 50cc, can be ridden on car license) can be aneconomical means of transport. Scooter registration, petrol, and maintenance are cheaper than that for a car,and parking is normally free. However, you also need to consider the costs of special clothing, insurance, andsafety as well! Note that the cost of owning a motorcycle would be closer to the cost of a car.Learn about scooters at www.scootersurvival.co.nz
  20. 20. Hardship FundThe Hardship Fund is an emergency fund that helps students facing financial difficulties. The Fund helpsmany students each year. Eligible students are expected to claim their full entitlement of the StudentLoan. Grants are available for a wide range of problems including:- medical/dental/optical costs- high course-related costs- high transport costs- flatting problems- childcare costs.The Advisers at Financial Support and Advice administer the Fund. For an appointment call 04-463 7474.Further details are available on the website www.victoria.ac.nz/finadviceExtra help from StudyLinkSpecial needs grantsStudents may be eligible for the following:- food grants of up $400- dental grants of up to $300 for urgent dental treatment- medical grants of up to $300 for medical emergencies- general emergency grants of up to $500- transition to work grants of up to $300, for job interview costs such as work clothes and travel. The job needs to be for a minimum of 30 hours per week for at least six weeks.Advances or recoverable assistanceAdvances for bond, overdue power bills, glasses, essential appliances, furniture or rent arrears areavailable. You need to pay these back.For applications and further information go to www.studylink.govt.nz or visit the outreach office.The StudyLink Outreach Office, Wellington is at 195–201 Willis Street, between Dixon and Ghuznee Streets,open 8.30am–5pm daily except Wednesday 9.30am start.18 Victoria University of Wellington
  21. 21. Healthwww.victoria.ac.nz/studenthealthFor confidential medical care on campus visit the Student Health Service.Consultations are free to students who enrol with the service as their Primary Health Provider (PHO).Costs Doctor NurseEnrolled patients No cost No costNon-enrolled patients with CSC card* $21 $15Non-enrolled patients without CSC card* $36 $15*These are 2011 prices. A small increase is likely in 2012.As well as dealing with general illnesses, accidents and prescriptions, services such as psychiatry anddermatology are also available. A physiotherapy clinic offers heavily subsidised rates for students.Kelburn Campus Phone 04-463 5308Pipitea Campus Phone 04-463 7474Community Services Card (CSC)The Community Services Card reduces doctors’ fees, prescription charges and hospital costs and can saveyou a lot of money. Up to 90% of students qualify for a Community Services Card. Eligibility is judged onyour personal annual income (not your parents’). The current limit for a single person living with others is$24,461 gross per annum (this gets adjusted annually on 1 April).Application forms are available from Student Health Service, Financial Support and Advice or StudyLink.Info line 0800 999 999Dental servicesDiscounted dental care is available for Victoria students at Symes de Silva Associates and Capital Dental.They both charge $60 for an examination, polish and basic x-ray and offer a 20% discount after the firstappointment. You need to show your student ID.Symes de Silva Associates Capital Dental (Newtown) Capital Dental (Petone)97–99 Courtenay Place 125–129 Riddiford Street 272 Jackson Street, Petonephone 04-801 5551 phone 04-389 8880 phone 04-920 0880Opening hours: Opening hours: Opening hours:Mon to Thu 8.30am–9pm; Weekdays 8am–5pm Weekdays 8:30am–5:00pmFri and Sat 8.30–5.30pm;Sun 9am–5pm StudyLink have a Special Needs Grant for emergency dental treatment for students on a low income. Thegrant is for up to $300 a year. You will need to get the dentist to fill out an Emergency Dental Treatmentform (they should have them) and get it approved by StudyLink before getting the treatment done. Financial Survival Guide 2012 19
  22. 22. Think about min imising your Student Loan debt . Even if it’sGetting paid interest free, it’ you have to repa s still a debt y. If you areStudent Loan (living costs) or Student Allowance: working part-tim e, maybe you caThis is paid weekly. avoid claiming th n e living costs,The first pay is during the second week of term (12 March 2012). especially if you live at home.The last pay is during the week after the final date of your course (19 November 2012).Dates for Faculty of Education and postgraduate students may differ.There is a useful tip sheet on our website www.victoria.ac.nz/finadvice for first-time applicants for aStudent Loan.Course related costs ($1,000)The full amount can be claimed as early as 14 days before the course start date. You can also budget overthe trimesters, ie. claim $500 in March and $500 in July. Claim online through MyStudyLink. The money isdirectly credited to your bank account. If you study over the summer, you won’t get more—$1,000 is forthe full year.Withdrawing with a refundDates for 2012 are:16 March 2012 (Trimester 1 and full year)27 July 2012 (Trimester 2)WarningCancelling your Student Loan does not cancel your enrolment. You still need to formally withdraw from your courses beforethe final date for refunds or you will be liable for the cost of the courses.Unemployment Benefit—Student HardshipThis benefit is available over the summer break. To be eligible you must be returning to study the followingyear and registered with Student Job Search. If you receive the Student Allowance you qualify for thisbenefit. If you don’t, you will have to show evidence of hardship, for example having to pay rent oversummer.You can apply online through my.studylink.govt.nz. Apply for the benefit early, at least two weeks beforeyour course ends. There is a one week stand-down period. You will be without income for one weekafter your allowance or loan living costs stops and the benefit starts. In 2012 this will be the week of26 November. If you get a job, you can always cancel the benefit.20 Victoria University of Wellington
  23. 23. Finding work Vic Careers (www.victoria.ac.nz/careers)Friendly staff are keen to help you with your CV, interview preparation and other job hunting skills.Whether it’s casual, part-time, summer or permanent work, they can assist you. Visit the Careers ResourceCentre, check out their excellent website or, use your Student Computing Services (SCS) account to loginand access Victoria CareerHub (http://careerhub.victoria.ac.nz)—it provides you with all you need toknow about job vacancies and career events.Kelburn Campus: 14 Kelburn Parade (Mon, Tues, Thu, Fri 9am–5pm, Wed 10.30am–5pm)Pipitea Campus: Drop-in sessions are available. Phone 04-463 5393.Student Job Search (SJS) (www.sjs.co.nz)SJS helps students find work. Enrol on the website and have a look at their job advertisements. Joboffers come in from employers all the time and your chances of finding a job are better if you check theadvertisements regularly.Minimum wage is $13 per hour. If you are receiving the Student Allowance you can work up to 15 hours on minimum wagebefore you reach the maximum allowed earnings of $203.13 per week before tax.IRD Tax Codes Gross pay = before tax Net pay = take home pay To see how much you will get after tax go to www.ird.govt.nzThe code behind tax codes and search for paye calculator- M stands for ‘Main’ income. You can only have one job (or allowance) with an M code.- stands for ‘Secondary’ income. All incomes besides your M one will have an S code. S- stands for ‘Student Loan’ and means that some of your pay may go to the IRD to pay off your SL Student Loan. If your total gross earnings for the year are over $19,084, you will be required to make some repayment of your Student Loan.So if you get a Student Allowance, it will use the M code, and any part-time work you get will use an S code.If you don’t get an Allowance, you should use an M code for your highest paying job. If you have more thanone job, you should use S codes for the others.If you have a student loan you will have to use SL with your tax code, ie. MSL, SSL.Student Finance Advisers are happy to help you estimate your taxable income anddecide which tax code to use. See the back cover for contact details. Financial Survival Guide 2012 21
  24. 24. True Stories We Can Tell(with names changed to protect the innocent)Louie was sharing a flat with two others. He was getting the Student Allowance and decided not to workpart-time during the trimester. He enjoyed going out with his friends. For a while he was fine since he had$1,000 course costs from the Student Loan to spend and he could use his overdraft. He wasn’t watchinghis account and when the rent payments went out they were reversed because of unavailable funds.Before long he owed six weeks rent ($810) and his flatmates told him to leave. He had no money to moveand no money to pay up. He had to find a job fast, but assignments were due so he was stressing out.Moral: A roof over your head is essential! Make sure you always pay the rent first. Don’t let rent or billspile up until they are too big a problem to handle.Jeremy received a Student Allowance and worked on-call at his job. Often he worked extra hours andhe regularly earned over the income limit for the allowance. He got a letter from the Ministry of SocialDevelopment advising him of a debt of $1,349 due to an overpayment of his Allowance. Data matchingoccurs regularly and Jeremy got caught. He regretted not getting his allowance adjusted for the weekswhen he earned over the limit.Moral: Be aware of your income threshold. If you don’t advise StudyLink, you will end up with a debt torepay.Kate signed a term lease for her flat at the beginning of Trimester 1. The lease end date was 20 Februaryof the following year. During the year two flatmates moved out. Their names were not on the lease. Itwasn’t easy to find replacement flatmates and it took longer than expected. Kate had to work extra hoursto pay the extra rent during that time and this affected her studies badly.Moral: Everyone should sign the lease and be clear on their commitment; or the head tenant shouldmake sure the others in the flat sign a flat sharing agreement to reduce his/her risk.James and his parents put together a plan that they would pay his first hall instalment. His StudyLinkincome and wages over the following weeks would build up to enough to pay the second instalment. Hekept all his money in one bank account and it was slowly increasing. But by the time the next instalmentwas due, he was $1,500 short! When he checked his bank statements, he realised he had been spendingabout $100 per week on food and drinks, beyond the meals provided at the Hall. He had eaten themoney needed for his accommodation.Moral: Check bank statements regularly to make sure your money is going where it should be. Have asystem to limit personal spending.Deanna was getting a Student Allowance and casual work with a catering company. In an average weekshe would get about 10 hours of work, which was enough to cover her essential living costs. Sometimesshe would work a lot in one week, and she would reward herself with a big night out with friends or anew pair of shoes. Then there were three weeks in a row where she had very little work, and she couldn’tafford to pay bills or bus fares.Moral: If your income varies, base your budget on the minimum income. In times where you earn more,put some money aside in savings for the times when you might have less.22 Victoria University of Wellington
  25. 25. Advice from previous students In a 2011 online survey conducted by Financial Support and Advice, third-year Victoria students were asked what financial advice they would give to someone starting their first year of university. Here are some of their answers … I found that in my first year of study I had a lot of money and Pay rent befo didnt need to worry. I spent all re anything Don’t drink. It saves you so my savings carelessly and now else. have a tighter budget to be much money! able to pay all my costs. I didn’t work in first year Budget, budget, budget! because I didn’t need the Flatting is expensive. Stay Shop at the vege markets money at the time, but at home if possible. and learn to cook. in later years I really wished I had. The summer holidays before uni not Borrowed money is starts, get a full time job and Despite what everyone else is doing, use your course-related costs for things that for save. You never know when or where free money. Use it you will be able to get a job during are actually course related. Its an easy ot $1,000 debt you can avoid if you dont use it things you need, n the trimester and it is better to for personal things like going to concerts things you want. have some money saved up. or buying alcohol. Youll feel stupid when Trimester 2 starts and you cant afford your text books.Dont spend money on Get out a set amount of moneytakeaways and other Make your own coffee! in cash each week and usemeals if you are already that for spending. EFTPOS cardspaying for meals at a are too easy to use and youhall of residence. don’t keep track of how much you are actually spending. Financial Survival Guide 2012 23
  26. 26. MOST PEOPLE. your money. You ISSU ES IS NOT EAtSY FORage your course choices, your study time andMANAGING MONEYyour studies, it’s importan to man ent Inc. t ou StudIf you are serious ab ed’ and your job as e bills to have fun. Often k of yourse lf as ‘self-employ over after paying th should thin oney left g to cope with this. e is never much m t st udents is that ther ts every da y who are strugglin The reality for mos bills! We see studen s our job to show you enough to pay the ve a bit of lifestyle fun-and it’ there’s not even y the bills and ha ible, with so me planning, to pa d see us! However, it is poss your own, come an tryin g to sort it out on how. So don’t stress Nicky Maria, Laura, and 2011 Financial Support and Advice commen ts from students who used our service: “Thank you for all your assistance, it was wonderful and invaluable advice.” “Thank you so much for your help, I was losing sleep over this and I feel so relieved now.” “Thank you so very much for all your help and advic e. It helped me so much to talk to someone who what to do.” knew “I really appreciated how helpful and pleasant it was to work with you over my finances and chat I came out of the meeting feeling refreshed and a it through. bit more easy than when I first came in. “Thank you so very much for all your kindness, help , support, and understanding, both practical and emotional. I would not have survived without it and can’t even say how grateful I am!” “It was interesting and very beneficial to talk to some one who was completely impartial and could provi budget advice in a way I hadn’t considered before.” de “I am usually aware and conscious of how much I spend, but your advice has opened my eyes to new saving, which will no doubt help me in the years ways of to come.” 24 Victoria University of Wellington
  27. 27. To make an appointment phone 04-463 7474The Student Finance Advisers are at (use any location):Kelburn Campus Level 1, Hunter Building Hours: 9am–5pm, Monday to Friday, all yearPipitea Campus Level 2, Railway Station, West Wing Hours: 9am–5pm, Monday and Thursday, except Trimester 3Te Aro Campus Ground Floor, 139 Vivian Street Hours: 12 noon–3pm, Thursdays, except Trimester 3Karori Campus Go to Karori Connect info point in the Karori LibraryFor general queries and information:Phone 04-463 6644 or 04-463 6658Email student-hardship@vuw.ac.nzWebsite www.victoria.ac.nz/finadvice Here to help you
  28. 28. Financial Support and Advice Accommodation Service Student Recruitment,Phone 04-463 6644 Phone 04-463 5896 Admission and OrientationFax 04-463 5252 Fax 04-463 9974 Phone 0800 Victoria (842 867)Email student-hardship@vuw.ac.nz Email accommodation@vuw.ac.nz 04-463 5374Website www.victoria.ac.nz/finadvice Website www.victoria.ac.nz/accommodation Fax 04-463 5193 Email course-advice@vuw.ac.nz Website www.victoria.ac.nz/futurestudents SS0068 OCT 2011

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