What if I told you that were simple ways that you could actually make college cheaper? I know, it sounds too good to be true but I really have some great pointers that you can use in order to cut your bills, so that you can start saving money right away. All you need to do is simply take action and try out these simple tips.
Always buy your books used
Never buy books new from your school. If you don’t know what kind of book you’ll need for your class, either ask your professor ahead of time, ask students or wait until the first day of class. You usually won’t need your book until the end of the week. By buying books used, you’ll be able to save at least 50%. Even if you don’t want to buy used, use a service like Amazon to buy your books new.
Look at your bills
One of the most expensive bills that most college students have are their cell phone bills. How often do you use your cell phone? You may find that you only call home and never really use your phone. Instead of paying $50-$100 a month with your cellphone, consider services like Skype to save on your bills. Skype has plans that are as little as $3/month for unlimited calls in the United States.
Sell your used books
At the end of each semester, you’re going to find that you’ll have a huge pile of books that you won’t be able to use anymore. Sure, you’ll need some for reference in the future but again, if you put your books for sale on Craigslist, Amazon, Ebay, etc., you’ll be able to get even more money back in your pocket. From my experiences, I was able to get 70-80% back in my pocket from what I spent in the first place.
Check out local housing
If you currently stay on campus, try and compare the rates of your current housing bills to the apartments that are in the near area. Remember, when you’re looking to compare prices, don’t forget to factor in heating, utility bills, gas, and everything else. Depending on what school you’re attending, you may find that one apartment may be cheaper than where you’re staying right now.
Watch your food purchasing
College students love to eat pizza and go out to eat all the time. If you can instead eat at your school or even eat in your dorm, you can easily save at least $100+ a month. If you think a dorm refrigerator and microwave is expensive now, think of how much you can save with one. Instead of eating at McDonald’s for $6, why not cook a hot pocket with some soup for $3? Just by doing this, you’re cutting your food bill in half.
Watch your clothing costs
Instead of getting the cool and new Abercrombie pair of pants for $80, try and check out your local TJ Maxx or even Goodwill. I’ve walked into a store like TJ Maxx and got new clothes for less than $20 that retail for $60. The only reason they are so cheap is because they aren’t in season anymore and they have an overstock. This is when the main retailers like Abercrombie, etc will ship their overstock to retailers like Marshalls and TJ Maxx.
Making college cheap isn’t that hard. Just look at the ways you spend your money and how you can reduce them. Even if you’re out of ideas, google for certain ideas and you’ll be amazed at what you can find. Also, never be afraid to be cheap at college because you’ll have the last laugh when you’re not in debt and you’re friends are drowning in it!