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Tuesday, 11 September 2018

How To Clear Debt During University


Most university students get themselves into debt in their first year of university through their overdraft. Fact.

After being extremely stable in my first year of university due to savings and landing a well paid job, in my second year I got myself into a huge financial situation, causing myself to max out my £1,000 overdraft and struggling for money. 

However now, I've managed to clear my overdraft and I'm steadily saving up more and money money. I'm not writing this post to try and be some financial advisor, because I am in no way one of those and only got a B in my maths GCSE, but I am writing this post as I want those who are going to start university in September to know that you should try your hardest not to dip into your overdraft, no matter how tempting it can be, and to also help those who may be in their overdraft and struggling to pay it off. 

STOP USING YOUR OVERDRAFT
This sounds so simple, but its amazing the amount of people who continue to spend their overdraft when they're struggling to get out of it. 

Opening up another account with your bank will allow you to deposit any incomes you have coming in, no matter how small or large, and you should use only this account for your spending, leaving your overdraft account and slowly adding to it in order to pay it off. 

Once in your overdraft, you shouldn't be putting any of your incomings straight into your overdraft account, as it will leave you confused on how much money you actually have to spend which in turn may cause you to be eating more into your overdraft.

PAY IN CASH
Contactless is such a useful invention, but also a dangerous one. The amount of times I've paid on contactless without even thinking about what I'm spending is ridiculous. If I knew I had money in my account I wouldn't really care, until I checked my banking app and found I'd gone overdrawn again and again and again. 

Paying in cash causes you to become more cautious with what you are spending, as you are more reluctant to hand over physical cash. You've probably heard this loads, but its true!

USE YOUR LEGS
Okay this point sounds a bit odd, but I don't mean it how you've probably taken it... shame on you. I mean don't be reliant on Uber, taxis and buses when you can simply walk places! 

It's so easy to just press a button and have an uber come for you to take you down the road for only £3 or so. But the amount of times I've done this is ridiculous and it all adds up. One month I wrote down EVERYTHING I spent and I realised that by the end of the month I had spent over £1,200 on transport... IN A MONTH. Thats £14,400 a year. Quick Maths.

If you live in a city and have to rely on transport, I would highly recommend buying a bus pass as it will save you A LOT of money in a year. You may not want to part with around £300 for it, but trust me, it's worth it. 

JUST COOK
Just Eat, Deliveroo and Ubereats are my failure. Ask anyone who knows me, I was titled the Queen of Takeaways with the amount I got. Not only did this make me fat, it also made me broke.

Many restaurants have a minimum spend of £10 for home delivery. If you went to the shop with £10, you could probably buy ingredients for about 3 different meals and the time it takes for the takeaway to be delivered to you is more-or-less the time it takes to get off your butt and go cook. 

I'm not saying you should ditch takeaways all together, because lets face it we're all students who are partial to a kebab... But maybe just cut down the amount you have.

GET A JOB
This is word that scares most students. A lot of people I know have the mentality of "I get a student loan, I don't need a job" ... and they're also the ones I know who are in debt.

Coincidence? I think not.

Fair play that some students get enough student loan that they don't have to get a job, but most students don't get that amount and they just think money is going to magically appear (or just rely on their parents). 


When I maxed out my overdraft I got 2 jobs, alongside selling clothing online. Most weekends I was getting a maximum of 3 hours sleep and going from one job to the next, not getting home until about 4am (one of my jobs was a club... don't get it twisted).

I didn't want to work, but I had to. And the funny thing is I'm kind of glad I had to go through this situation as now my work ethic is amazing and I can financially depend on myself which is an amazing feeling. Not only that but I have more to put on my CV which will help me in the future.





Whether you're starting university this September, or are currently in university, please don't forget that overdrafts and students loans aren't just free money. They're debts which you will have to pay back, and the more of them you spend, the more of a worse situation you are getting yourself in to if you do not have an income which can support it. 

Bloody hell, does this mean I'm an adult now? 

I'm thinking of making a YouTube video about my university experience and maybe a mini q&a, so if that's something you'd like to see make sure to tell me in the comments and maybe leave me some questions!

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