Getting higher education is a great experience for Australians: Learning and specialising in new things, meeting a whole range of people you never would have otherwise, earning your way towards an impressive qualification – but it’s also an expensive process as well.
In fact, the costs of education have increased by 3.1 per cent over the last year, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. That means it’s all the more important for students to make sure they are making the most and losing the least when it comes to their personal banking. Let’s take a look at a few quick ways you can save money and still live the student lifestyle.
1) Share the load with a flat
A general rule of thumb if you want to save money is to do things in bulk. Cooking, laundry, groceries, do them all at once and reduce your expenditure. And what better way is there to do this than to live with other fellow students? You could save bucketloads as a result.
Rental rates across the nation are growing very slowly, according to CoreLogic RP Data, but that doesn’t mean it’s time to go solo in accommodation. Even the Australian government says that solo accommodation could be hundreds of dollars more expensive than a shared flat. This is your chance to forge lifelong friendships as well as good financial behaviour.
2) Join a social club
University isn’t just about earning your degree – some of the most valuable things that you’ll get from going to university is a friendship circle and, potentially, business contacts for later in life. That’s great preparation for the future, but you also get immediate benefits by investing your time with one of these clubs.
Social or community clubs often have discounted or free activities, meaning that you can go out and have a blast without spending a cent (or at least a great deal less) for the privilege. Considering that entertainment will be one of your biggest costs, this can reduce the damage on your savings account by a fair margin and help you build a friendship circle to boot.
3) Switch to an incentivised savings account
For many students, heading to uni is one of the first occasions when they spend prolonged time away from home, without the influence of their parents hanging over them. This is, of course, one of the best parts of being a student, that feeling of independence, but sometimes that new freedom can get a little bit out of hand. Willpower is the key here, and there are strategies to making sure you don’t spend more than you intended.
One particularly useful method is the use of incentivised savings accounts. These can be serious upgrades to your current savings scheme, as they give you more interest if you keep your cash in the account. We have such an account here at Police Bank, so don’t be afraid of getting in touch with the team and switch over if you want to make the most of your good savings behaviour.
With the right mindset and strategies, you don’t have to fall into the stereotype of the poor student struggling by on ramen noodles and shivering in your accommodation. Stay on top of your savings using these tips, and you’ll soon find you have this whole higher education business in the bag.
However, if you do find you could use a further hand with your financial planning, make sure to get in contact with the team at Police Bank! Whether you need a more adaptable transactional account or want to sort out some insurance, we’re just a phone call or Service Centre visit away.