Student finance special
Whether you're taking your first steps at university or are an old hand on campus, our student finance special gets you up to date on:
- Borrowing sensibly
- Savings accounts
- Your student forum, 100voices
- Getting free stuff
Studying on a budget?
Starting university is unbelievably exciting for so many great reasons. You get to meet lots of new people, go in new directions and do things you’ve never done before. You learn so much - both about yourself and about your chosen course (although it mightn’t seem so enriching when you’re halfway through a 5,000 word essay with one night to finish it).
You'll also learn about money management, budgeting and bargain-hunting – skills that will prove handy many years after you graduate.
There are many ways you can do this; getting part-time work, beating the crowds at the sales, using skill-swap and barter websites and of course thrifty cooking.
We’re not exactly dab hands in the kitchen but we do know a lot about money management. We've also got some friends we can call on.
If you're a student, or someone in your family is, you might be interested in 100voices written by students, for students and supported by Barclays.
It's a social forum with advice on how to manage your money, from finding the best offers and deals to keeping down the food bill without having to eat beans every single day.
The best way to save money is to get stuff for free. Many of the major banks offer enticing discounts and freebies with their student accounts, so be sure to check out what's on offer.
Our own Student Additions Account offers exclusive access to deals with Phones 4u until 31 December 2010, including FREE phones, laptops, TVs and PlayStation 3s. You can check out the deals at Phones 4u
Borrowing money is an inevitable fact of life for most students so remember the golden rule: debt isn't bad, bad debt is bad.
If you borrow sensibly you can use the money as an investment in your future career. Two things to consider:
- What are you borrowing for? Ask yourself do you really need to borrow the money and why? Then pick the appropriate way to borrow.
- What can you afford? Deduct your total monthly outgoings from your income to find out how much disposable income you have. Don’t commit the whole lot to loan repayments in case you need extra cash. Use our Budget planner to work it out
It might seem a bit odd to think about savings accounts when you're not working full time but students have always been enthusiastic savers, particularly saving on tax with cash ISAs if you have a lump sum at the beginning of the academic year.