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MAKE MONEY WHILE AT UNI With many thousands of pounds sitting in your bank account the usual student on a average student budget may feel the extreme temptation to spend. What you must remember is that the money you have just got at the start of term may have to last throughout the term so u need to think responsibly well . . . . until you receive your next loan cheque or other income.

It's a good idea to make a student budget plan- and an even better one to stick to it. Make sure your plan is realistic – allowing a reasonable amount for going out as well as essentials like food and accommodation the key to this is writing it out in a table and sticking it in places around your room.

You need to decide whether you're budgeting for term time spending only, or for the whole year. Some students, especially those living in halls of residence, may budget on a term basis if they plan to return home during the holidays and a good way to increase your spending power is a summer time job.

The best and most simplistic student budget calculator method is to take your total income over a set period of time and divide by the number of weeks or months. So, for example, if you want to work out a monthly budget for the whole year, you need to divide your expected yearly income by 12 to give you your monthly income (0000/12 = 000). Don't build in income assumptions that may not come off. For example, don't plan a yearly budget based on your income from the Student Loan Company with an assumption that you'll earn s doing a summer bar job that you don’t already have its not realistic and could lead to problems down the line.

Once you've made your monthly income, you need to set out your spending (a student budget plan). Start with fixed and essential outgoings – like rent, bills and travel costs. Then list all your other, less fixed outgoings – food, clothes, entertainment and so on. Add up the outgoings and take them away from your total income.

If the balance is positive, you've established a budget that you can live within. But if the out goings are greater, then you then have a negative budget which means one of two things if you want to avoid running into more debt: You need to cut back on the non-essentials to make the budget balance
You need to find a way to increase your income; this site has a section on making easy money.

For many students balancing their budget causes as much stress as sitting finals. If you think you'll be heading towards a significant budget deficit before your next income comes through, don't ignore it. Talk to your bank, student union rep or parents.
 

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