Setting Your College Student Up for Financial Success

College Tuition

Ah, the end of summer.  Time for the kids to go back to school, including the college students.  The first year of college can be quite a learning experience, not just academically, but socially and emotionally as well.  Unfortunately, for many college students, it’s also a financial learning experience.  I say unfortunately because many college freshman begin their long journey into credit card and student loan debt.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.  If you’re a loyal reader of the Penny Hoarder, you already know many of the tools to increase your income and stay out of debt.  Hopefully you can point any college freshman you know over to this site to save them years of financial misery paying back their loans.  (I jest, sort of, but debt repayment  is painful!  It’s so much more fun to make wads of money.)

Here’s my advice for college freshman to keep them out of debt:

1.  Find a fun job (or two).  You don’t have to settle for making minimum wage working a job on campus.  There are plenty of other jobs you can do in your free time such as mystery shopping, critiquing a company’s Internet web site, or even getting paid to buy beer!  (Seriously!  Check the archives.  This is a great job for college students.)

You can also volunteer to be in a focus group and give your opinions on products.  For an hour or two of your time, you can earn from $50 to $200!  Marketers love to target college kids, so you’re in demand for focus groups.

2.  Save money.  Saving money on your regular expenses goes a long way to keeping yourself out of debt.  I understand a college student needs certain basics such as Internet and television.  Search the Internet to find the best deals on rent, internet and cable, including sky broadband offers.  Then, negotiate to see if you can get the price lower.  If you can’t, settle with the best bundle deal.

3.  Always search for the next best way to make money.  Thanks to the Internet, there are endless ways to make money while keeping a flexible schedule to complete your school work.  Devote a little bit of time every day to find new ways to make money.  You won’t be sorry!

Most college students are broke and in debt, but you don’t have to be one of them if you follow these three steps.  There truly are hundreds of ways to make extra money and get yourself through college.

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