Juggling between attending class, joining school organizations, acing examinations, and doing essays is not an easy feat for students. If you think being a student is difficult, imagine being a student entrepreneur.
Student entrepreneurs have to work smarter and harder to make things work in terms of academic and business progress. One of the challenges is to save money. So, we have researched and came up with money saving tips for the student entrepreneur.
- Research on Technology and Software Deals for Students
Being a student has a lot of advantages when it comes to deals because of the requirements needed for the school such as laptops or tablet and computer software. You can use these deals in helping your business such as the use of Microsoft Excel in tracking or Photoshop for image creation. Back to school deals are also common so be sure to not miss that.
- Choose a Student Friendly Credit Card
This tip might concern you as it is supposed to be tips for saving money and not spending. Credit cards have a bad reputation for putting people in debts but only for those who have no idea of how to maximize its potential. However, nowadays, there are Credit cards that offer credit scores
which doesn’t have an annual fee, and some have rewards or cashback programs that can save students hundreds of dollars a year.
- Research on Grants
Another advantage of being a student is being able to apply for grants depending on your chosen field. It’s a great opportunity to start your business and have someone support it through a grant. Therefore, it will help you save money instead of using it for research and execution. It’s also a great avenue for introducing and marketing your brand without a cost!
- Make Use of Free and Available Support
Being a student gives you access to amazing research tools which are usually free and available. Make the most out of it by reading on the industry you want to enter. Students usually have access to major newspapers which can keep them updated with trends and finance news. You can also utilize the experts, such as mentors, that surround you. You can share with them your business plan and have their feedback. Use them while they’re still free because consulting an expert after college will cost you a lot.
- Expand Your Connections
Being a student gives you the opportunity to mingle with fellow students, professors, and field experts. The more people who you can share your product or services with can mean a spread of word of mouth for your business. Interaction with these people can help develop your social circle, references, and support. Ensure that you have a perfect business pitch which is highly structured and easy to understand. If you think that going to college parties or general assemblies are not your thing, then you can explore social media. Social media can be very helpful and it’s easy to find peers on this platform.
- Consider Starting a Retirement Plan
While investment means spending, it can help you save money in the long run. Having a retirement plan can prepare you in the future since you don’t have an employer to pay it for you. But don’t be pressured into buying a retirement plan at the early stage of your business as it can be a burden in the long run. Make sure that your business is already doing good and you can afford to invest in a retirement plan. If a retirement plan has interested you and you understand the investment, research on terms to help with ease of payment such as paying for a lower premium but on a longer time frame.
- Take Care of Your Credit Rating
Credit rating is like a shadow that’s going to follow you even after college. Having a credit card while as a student will help you start building your credit history. Avoid creating risks that can lower your credit rating as it can decrease your chances of obtaining business loans in the future. It’s easy to have your card swiped for a lot of purchases and lose track of how much you have spent. Track your purchases by differentiating personal and business. Comparing credit cards, bank rates and savings accounts online could be an immense help and save you a lot of money.
- Track Everything
As mentioned on tip # 3, track everything – from your allowances, income, expenses to budgets. It’s important to not lose sight of your financial goals. It’s not that easy especially if you’re just a student and want to have fun. Student entrepreneurs will always exert double the effort than those students only but expect to have a doubled reward in the future as well.
- Create Segmentation with Your Accounts
In support of tip # 8, keeping your personal and business transactions separate can help in tracking your income and expenses. And you can start with opening a bank account for your business transactions. Opening an account is not that complicated and it usually doesn’t require a big maintaining balance.
- Utilize Assignment for Business Research
Essays are the usual assignment for students that will require them to tap into their resourcefulness, patience, and understanding. Doing essays can be a chore if you don’t see any advantage from your point of view aside from passing English literature. Find passion in research as it can help you learn more about the business industry.
In conclusion, it’s not easy to balance education and business, especially in a financial aspect. But with focus, determination, and the right mindset, you can be successful in anything you set your mind into.
Nicole Hicks a graduate of UFT. She’s based in Toronto but travels much of the year. Nicole has written for NPR, Motherboard, MSN Money, and the Huffington Post. Nicole is a financial reporter, focusing on technology, national security, and policing.