How to Budget While Paying Off Student Loans

3 Ways to Budget while Paying Off Your Student Loans

You're trying to pay back your student loans, but you're still trying to live your life. We get it.

Let's face it: having a portion of your paycheck every month go towards your student loans can put a bit of a damper on your mood. But there are ways to make repayments on your student loan while still being able to enjoy things that cost money - as long as you budget responsibly. It's true - let us prove it to you with three simple ideas.

#1: PUT THE "HAPPY" in Happy Hours

Socialization is a key part of many lifestyles - so limiting the amount you go out due to your budget can be disheartening. But there are ways to refine and modify your spending without sacrificing your socialization, especially while you are still in school.

1. Suggest activities that don't break the bank - such as frisbee in the park, a board game in your living room, or a day spent on a hike.

2. Meal prep, meal prep, meal prep: Cooking is fun (especially when friends join!) and you'll save a huge amount on food if you're going to the grocery instead of a restaurant.

3. Everyone has a blowout night every once in awhile - and that's ok! Even the small charges can add up, though - so look for places with happy hour offerings, meal deals, or even available coupons.

#2: DITCH THE WHEELS (OR THE UBER)

Purchasing, maintaining, and owning a car gets expensive. If you're in a large city with easy public transportation and ride share options, you might want to consider getting rid of your wheels (temporarily, or all together!)

Heads up: If you're interested in getting some side-income from your car, check out Turo. The application allows you to rent out your car to users effortlessly.

HOW MUCH DOES TRANSPORTATION COST?

(using Austin, TX as an example. Howdy!)

TYPE COST GAS INSURANCE PARKING
CAR $150/month payment (if financed) $50/month $150/month $160/month
RIDESHARE $20/day
($600/month)
$0 $0 $0
PUBLIC TRANSPORT (BUS) $30/month $0 $0 $0

#3: ONE MAN'S TRASH IS ANOTHER MAN'S TREASURE

Hear us out: Vintage is in.

Not only does shopping at secondhand and vintage stores give you the opportunity to find one-of-a-kind pieces of furniture and clothing (definitely cool) - but it also saves the environment and economy.

Instead of hitting up the shopping mall (or your Amazon shopping cart), check out nearby estate sales, garage sales, and secondhand shops.

And - bonus! - you can embrace the side-hustle life by selling your clothes. Hit up a consignment store with your years-old clothing to see if anything has resale value. You can even list clothing for sale from the comfort of your home with an app like Poshmark or ThredUp.

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