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Many people aim to become financially independent. But now, many people understand you can begin following this aim while still a student.
Just think about it. You begin to live separately from your parents as most students want to live on campus, and now only you are responsible for your time management, nutrition, and health. So, it’s the best time to think about financial independence.
Financial independence will give you more control over life, you’ll be less dependent on others, and you will not have to worry and feel stressed about money. Here are seven tips to help you start from somewhere.
Tips To Become Financially Independent As A Student
1. Apply for scholarships, grants, and other special programs!
It’s not a secret for anyone that going to college is expensive. You must be ready to pay around $35,000 per year, an average cost and, therefore, lower than what you’ll pay in Ivy League universities. So, if you want to work towards your financial independence, you have to find a way to save money and study, if not free, then at least at a reduced rate.
First, complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) form. After doing so, you will see whether you are eligible for the FWS (Federal Work-Study) program or if there are some grants you can get matched with.
Different colleges will offer you scholarships if you are an exceptional basketball player or quarterback, a genius physicist, or a brilliant mathematician. If not, you can visit your target college financial aid office to determine which scholarships you qualify for.
2. Take up courses online!
College is probably not your only interest, and you have exciting hobbies and passions that are not connected with your qualifications and degree but can help you get a good job in the future. So, if you are good at photography, writing, or software engineering, develop these skills and sign up for different courses on Coursera, LinkedIn Learning, uDemy, edX, etc.
But do not forget that this activity will take all your free time. How will you write your assignments if all you do is create online courses?
Maybe it’s time to delegate your papers and focus on work for at least a week. Check out writingpapersucks.com and find out which writing service you can trust.
3. Find a part-time job
To become financially independent, you have to start earning money. That’s why you have to find a part-time job.
Many students say they have a hectic timetable, but with good time management skills, you can find some extra hours to earn money. For example, you can become a tutor, freelance writer, translator, driver, or courier. You can also walk dogs or babysit kids.
4. Start investing
Investing in college can seem daunting for students, but it can be a great way to build wealth and prepare for the future. There are several ways that college students can invest, even with limited funds.
A Roth IRA is one of the most popular ways to invest in college. This retirement account allows individuals to contribute after-tax dollars, and the money grows tax-free. It’s important to note that there are income limitations for contributing to a Roth IRA, but many college students may still qualify.
Starting early with a Roth IRA can lead to significant returns in the long run. Another way to invest in college is through a brokerage profile. This type of investment account allows individuals to buy and sell stocks, bonds, and other securities.
Many brokerage firms now offer commission-free trades, making investing more affordable for college students. Researching and being mindful of risks when investing in the stock market is essential.
5. Spend money wisely
Being financially independent as a student doesn’t mean you have to say “no” to all expenses, never go out with your friends, or save, gradually turning into Scrooge.
It only means you have to plan your budget and spend money as wisely as possible. Spending money on what you like and want is always better.
So, for example, if all your friends have the latest iPhone, it doesn’t mean you also have to buy it if your current phone works nicely and you are satisfied.
6. Spend less than you earn and save the rest
That’s the best principle you must follow to become financially independent as a student. And there are many different ways to save small amounts of money, like buying cheaper car insurance, finding a more affordable phone service, and always following your shopping list without spontaneous purchases.
7. Don’t keep things you don’t need
When you live in a dorm, you don’t have much space.
That’s why it’s a good idea to get rid of unnecessary stuff: clothes you don’t wear, old textbooks that you don’t need anymore, the collection of comic books you are not as excited about as you used to be, and skates you bought but have never used for ice skating.
We all have things we don’t need. And there are people for whom they will be a real blessing. So why not sell them?
First of all, cash will occupy less space in your room. Second, you’ll be able to invest the money or spend it to experience positive emotions, which is necessary occasionally to improve your overall well-being.