Money Matters

Something that will be on your mind over the summer is money! Having just paid out a deposit and possibly a summer rent retainer and not having another loan instalment for a while, you will need to keep an eye on your finances over the summer. Now is the time to investigate whether you can boost your income, maybe by getting a summer job or by applying for any bursaries, scholarships or academic competitions for which you are eligible. Your Students' Union advice centre will be able to advise you how you might go about this.

The next thing you need to do is look at what money is coming in and what money is going out and prioritise what you really need to spend your money on. If you know you are going to struggle to pay rent in August, you need to start looking into where you can save money now. Can you cancel a gym membership that you never use or negotiate yourself a better bargain on your mobile? Rent, energy bills and course equipment are all essential outgoings - if you can’t pay for these things, you’ll find yourself in a mess pretty quickly. You will find it difficult to catch up with rent payments if you start off behind. If you know you are going to have money issues speak to your landlord and your Student Advice Centre in advance.

Budgeting - tips for saving cash

  • Turn off lights and electrical appliances when you are not using them. Don’t leave things on standby and don’t leave your phone charger plugged in unnecessarily. Even turning the tap off while brushing your teeth will save you a bit of money.
  • Do a bit of research. Can you get better deals on your gas, electric and internet supplier? Always check with your landlord before making any changes.
  • Try shopping and cooking with house mates. Things that you all use, like washing up liquid might be more cost-effective to buy as a group. If you take it in turns to cook with your friends, you may find it saves you money and helps you eat better.
  • Check out student finance websites such as student calculator, money saving expert and studentbeans.