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How to stick to a university budget

If you’re moving to university for the first time, it’s likely that you’ve never had to properly budget your money before.

Suddenly, you’re a university student with a large chunk of money in your bank account that’s expected to last you until the new year.

Studying at university can be stressful enough, so don’t add any extra stress by running out of money too soon.

Work out your total income

Work out how much money you will have in total for the weeks that it must last you. Take in to account any extra income on top of your student loan, such as wages from a part time job or extra money from relatives.

We love a good spreadsheet, so we would recommend breaking it down so you can easily keep track of your income.

Work out your outgoings

Once you have a total amount for your first term, work out your bills for that period. This should include your rent and any bills that you are responsible for, such as your phone bill and travel costs.

Remember that all your utility bills are included in your rent price at Nurtur House (excluding a TV license should you require one), so you don’t need to worry about budgeting for that.

Create a weekly budget

Once you’ve calculated how much money you will have access to in your first term, deduct all your outgoing payments for that period, and you will know how much money you have left to spend.

It would be a good idea to work out how many weeks are included in your first term at university and divide your money further into a weekly budget.

Your first student loan payment should hit your bank in September, but you won’t see your second payment until January time, meaning you might have to budget for around 20 weeks.

For example, if your total funds are around £1,000 after bills, divide that by 20 weeks and you will be budgeting to £50 a week. Take in to account some weeks that may be more expensive than others, such as any big events you are attending or any gifts you intend to buy around Christmas time.

Have a separate account for your weekly budget

It might be a good idea to set up a second account and move your budget across each week, keeping it separate for the large chunk of money.

That way you can keep a better track of what you are spending, and how much you have left to last you until the following week.

Stick to your budget to reduce your money worries

If you work out your budget properly and always stick to it, you can help to alleviate any extra stress you might feel as a student.

It might mean having to compensate on some things and not always attend everything in the social calendar, but learning to budget your income is a brilliant skill to learn as soon as you can, and is one that will take you through life.

Written by the Nurtur Team

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