5 Bad Financial Habits To Get Rid Of While You Are Still In University
23/09/2016 at 10:00 am #561
Being in university is not easy. It is the last chance for you to make mistakes and learn from them before your transition into a “Proper Adult.”
As such, it is vital that you get rid of your bad habits before you become financially independent. Here are 5 bad financial habits that you should try to get rid off while you still have time, and how you can break them.
Not Keeping Track Of Your Expenses
It is surprising how many people do not keep track of their expenses in this age and time, especially since expenses-tracking is so convenient. When you do not keep track of your expenses, you will often find yourself short of money at the end of the month because you had no idea you’ve already spent so much.
All you have to do is to download an app, and key in your daily spending. You will then realise just how every small little expense contributes to quite a fair amount at the end of the month.
What To Do
Start by downloading an app to record your expenses. There are various apps that are free for you to use, and they even categorise your spending, which gives you an idea of how much you spend on food, entertainment, transport, etc.
Next, note down your expenses at the end of every day and before you know it, this good habit will be cultivated. If you need reminding, you can always set reminders on your phone, or get a friend to remind you.
Poor budgeting occurs when you underestimate the amount of money you are going to spend for the month. When you underestimate, you will be left with no money before the month ends.
What To Do
The first step to proper budgeting is to know your schedule. How many times do you have to eat outside every week? How often will you have to take public transport? Are there any movie outings planned?
It is likely that you will not estimate accurately at the start, but after a month or two, you should be able to see a pattern emerge. You must then tackle it appropriately, be it by increasing your budget or cutting down on things you do not need to spend on. And this brings us to the next point…
Spending On Things You Don’t Need
We all know that there is a difference between Wants and Needs, but how many of us actively reject buying things we don’t need?
The bad habit of getting things without considering whether they are necessary may not be causing you much trouble now but it will in the future when you are financially independent and have the ability to spend a lot more money.
What To Do
Start small by finding alternatives. For example, you want coffee, but do you have to get it from an expensive café? How about cheaper 3-in-1 coffee you can make at home? Want to meet your friends for a meal? You don’t have to do it at an expensive restaurant!
Try switching all your wants to something less pricey and sustainable, before completely eliminating them from your expenditure.
Succumbing To Peer Pressure
It is difficult to decline invitations to events and parties. After all, who wants to miss out on all the fun while they are in university.
That said, it is important to know where to draw the line because not only will you end up with a hole in your pocket if you keep accepting every party you are invited to, your health might also be at stake. Just because your friends can afford to spend lavishly does not mean you can too. But how should you handle this?
What To Do
Learn how to say “no”. If your friends invite you to an outing that is not accounted for in your budget, you should not readily agree to join them. Missing out on some activities once in a while will not hurt your friendships. If you are afraid of missing out, you can always suggest and organise more budget-friendly alternatives, such as having picnics or an outing to the beach.
Not Saving Part Of Your Allowance
Many of us still get our pocket money from our parents. Although you are allowed to spend all your allowance, it does not mean that you should.
If you are not in the habit of saving, it is important that you start cultivating it as soon as possible. Any amount will do, as long as you have a fraction of your allowance in your bank at the end of the day.
What To Do
There are many simple methods to saving money. One way is to set aside a percentage of your allowance at the beginning of the month. By doing so, you will have to budget within your means so that you do not touch what you set aside.
Another way to do so is to have a simple piggy bank. At the end of every day, you deposit all the coins you accumulate into it. It’s easy to do so, and helps to prevent you from spending unnecessarily because you want to get rid of your coins! Find a method that suits you, and stick to it. Remember that it only takes 21 days to form a new habit!
Getting rid of bad financial habits while you are still young would do you a lot of good when you are older.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.