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A budget is a plan for how you spend the money you earn or receive each month.  

Budgeting is key when it comes to managing your finances.

There are some great apps available which can help you budget.

How Do I Budget?
  1. Determine how much money you have coming in (income)
  2. Determine where you need and want your money to go (expenses)
  3. If it helps, track your expenses for 3 to 4 months to get averages of how much you are spending on:
    1. Tuition and Fees
    2. Books and School Supplies
    3. Rent or Mortgage (or Room and Meals if living on-campus)
    4. Utilities
    5. Cell Phone
    6. Transportation
    7. Groceries
    8. Dining Out (including fast food and coffee shops)
    9. Clothing
    10. Entertainment (movies, concerts, etc.)
    11. Medical Expenses
    12. Holidays & Gifts
    13. Savings
    14. Miscellaneous
  4. Enter income and expenses into a budgeting app or budget calculator.  Are your expenses less than or equal to your income? 

If more money is going out than coming in, you are most likely borrowing from the next month’s budget or going into debt. Either way, you are borrowing from your future income .  You either need to increase your income or decrease your expenses.

How Can I Increase Income?
  1. Seek out as many scholarships as possible. They won't find you! Explore scholarship opportunities here.

  2. File your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) early at to get the best financial aid package available to you. It's available October 1, 2016 for the 2017-2018 school year!
  3. Find a part-time job with the help of Federal Work-Study. Try to stick to under 20 hours per week so it doesn't mess with your academics.
  4. Use your smarts, hobbies, or interests to earn money! Tutor high school students, walk dogs, babysit, or sell crafts and creations online.
  5. Sell things you no longer need. De-clutter and earn cash at the same time.
How Can I Reduce Expenses?
Where Can I Find Budget Calculators?

You can find them in multiple locations. You can use apps, online options, or spreadsheets like those you can download below.

How Can I Prep for Future Income?
  1. Use the extensive resources available with Career Services to prepare for and explore future careers.

  2. Research what your future salary may be based on your job and where you intend to live.