Budgeting for college students

The financial counseling staff at Kansas State University have published an article addressing financial responsibility for college students. From the piece:

Budgeting should begin before a student even sets foot on campus, said Jodi Kaus, program director for Powercat Financial Counseling at Kansas State University. Students may have extra funding from high school graduation gifts, savings bonds or part-time job income, and it’s important to put that money to good use.

“Students should keep an emergency savings cushion for unexpected contingencies,” Kaus said. “They should articulate their own specific financial goals to prioritize how they want to make use of these extra resources. Using them for a portion of college costs could help reduce the amount of necessary loans and interest charges.”

Once students get to school, Kaus said they need to be in tune with their money. Making a detailed list of all spending items can reduce the chance of running into an unexpected expense.

“Laundry and haircuts are often overlooked, but these costs can add up over time,” Kaus said. “Eating out tends to be the biggest budget breaker for most students. It becomes a social event, but $15 here and there starts to eat into a budget very quickly.”

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