College is an opportunity to become independent and make your own decisions. Not only are college freshman focused on entertaining themselves but they also can feel overwhelmed with classes. It’s also normal to want to go out and enjoy your surroundings. With all of these factors, financial mistakes are bound to happen. Here are five financial mistakes to avoid during your freshman year at college.
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1. Having A Horrible Budget
A common factor with going into college is not realizing how much everything costs. Yes, you can go out with your entire floor every Tuesday for a weekly food run, but after a few weeks the bills will start to add up.
Think smart and before entering college keep track of how much you are spending each week.
See where you need to cut back so the items that are necessary to buy don’t become a burden.
2. Working For Minimum Wage
Time management is important in college years and trying to make the most of your time can be vital. Working for minimum wage can seem pointless due to how many hours you have to put in to make decent spending money. However, every little bit helps when you’re struggling to make ends meet in college.
Getting involved with your degree and finding jobs with your skills can help to eventually produce a larger paycheck and most importantly, give you valuable real-world experience.
3. Simply Not Working
Moving to or commuting to a new town can feel overwhelming along with adjusting to a new school. The first year in college can put a shock on someone and can even feel scary. It’s important to not quit your job or simply decide not to find a job. Some perks to working a part-time job are:
- You can choose to work a few days a week
- Puts money in your pockets
- Can help you escape from the classroom environment
4. Falling Under Peer Pressure
It’s important to have a healthy balance between class life and social life. Although this sounds like common sense, it may seem difficult to turn down friends to a Saturday night out on the town.
Yes, it’s important to enjoy your time in college with friends, but this can make way for some expensive nights and/or vacations.
Saying no every now and then will not destroy your social life, but instead it can keep your budget on track.
5. Stop Looking For Scholarships
Senior year of high school consists of preparing for college and earning as many scholarships as possible. But at times, it’s easy to forget that after your first year of college, larger lists of scholarships are offered to students. You could regret not taking advantage of scholarships once you have to start paying student loans back.
Consult With Metro North Federal Credit Union
Here at MNFCU, we offer many different scholarships and grant opportunities to our members. Our staff is always available to talk with recent high school graduates to help them understand the importance behind saving money and setting up their FAFSA to help pay for school. Contact us today!