Student Euphoria Clouds Financial Judgement

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With freshers’ week underway and many students living independently away from home for the first time, financial management can be difficult to keep on track. During the first few weeks of term there is so much excitement, as well as endless opportunities to get involved in university life, it is important to remember to keep on top of your money.

Research carried out by Bacs, the industry responsible for Direct Debit, found that 34% of 16-24 year olds prefer to live for today rather than plan for the future and 20% would borrow money or pay by credit card rather than save. That said, half of all 16-24 year olds described themselves as being careful with money in a survey of over 5,000 adults.

Mike Hutchinson, head of marketing at Bacs, has given advice on financial management for new students as they begin their journey at university to help prevent them going into the red. Hutchinson suggests that students should make a budget and stick to it, check bank statements regularly to keep track of spending and set up Direct Debits to pay bills.

If you are living in shared accommodation it can be cheaper to shop together and share meals. Look out for student discounts online such as railcards, bus passes, cinema tickets as well as offers in restaurants and clothes stores. Finally, avoid taking your bank card out with you so as not to spend more money than you can afford and can stick to your budget.

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    Rachael Richards SUAUC adviser

    If you need help to work out a budget then you can download a free guide produced by the Students’ Union Advice & Information Centre from http://suaic.susu.org/download?c=1 How to Budget and Successfully manage your finances. Also look out for the Money Doctors around campus – they have white coats and can help give your finances a health check!

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