The number one thing students can do to plan for their financial future is learn to pay themselves before anyone else, Cindy Best, Account Executive at Wells Fargo Education Financial Services, said.
Best shared her knowledge of finance with students Thursday afternoon in Tucker Hall with a presentation called “Money Talks, Don’t Bust Your Budget: How Not To Go Broke in College.”
“If you just gave up a couple coffees a week and instead saved that money you would’ve spent, you can save thousands of dollars per year,” Best said.
Students should budget themselves and create spending plans in order to save money now, she said. The most important part of the budgeting process is to take a portion of income and immediately place it into savings.
Most students will have loans to pay back after graduation, but the sooner they begin to put aside a few dollars a day, the more cushion they will have for spending later, Best said.
Sophomore criminal justice major Adriana Warda said she creates a budget for herself using a simple Excel spreadsheet. She said she enters her monthly expenses and her monthly income to compare the numbers and to see if her spending should be altered.
A Smartphone app, iSpending, is also available to categorize spending versus income, Best said.
If students put aside even $5 per day and learned to invest it smartly, by age 55 those savings could be multiplied to reach at least $1 million, Best said. This kind of budgeting is the way to go with the recent burst of overqualified individuals competing with recent college graduates for entry-level jobs, she said.
Websites like frogsaver.com are available for TCU students who want to take advantage of student discounts at nearby restaurants, shops and grocery stores, in order to begin a more budget-friendly lifestyle.