Many people suffer anxiety considering what might happen in their financial future, however, there are things to help minimise long-term debt you could accrue while in college/university.
You can start a side hustle, find ways of saving on college expenses, and find other ways to fund your education.
Start a Side Hustle
One way to help offset the cost of college is to start a side hustle, which can be anything from freelance work to selling items online. Some popular side hustles include:
- Food delivery. If you own your own vehicle, you could work as a food delivery driver for companies such as UberEats or DoorDash.
- Handyman. Not everyone is capable of fixing a leaky tap or erecting a shed. If you’re good with your hands, you can make extra money.
- Freelancer. If you’re a skilled writer, you can make some serious money, whether you’re writing a blog, providing website content, or improving a company’s Google rankings with SEO content.
- Tutoring. Parents will happily pay you to pass on your skills to their kids if you’re exceptionally talented in a specific subject.
Do something you love, raise enough funds for your start-up, and make sure there’s enough income to cover your expenses and make a profit.
Saving on College-related Expenses
Another way to minimise long-term debt is to save on college- or university-related expenses. Look for student discounts, buy used textbooks (Facebook marketplace is great for this!), and cook meals instead of eating out. Finding affordable housing and taking advantage of campus transportation options are other ways of saving on expenses.
Finding New Funding Sources
Look into available grants and scholarships in addition to a student loan. Many scholarships and grants are available, so do your research, and apply for as many as you’re eligible for. You can also use a tuition payment plan. This can help you spread out your tuition payments over time, making them more manageable.
Limit Your Living Expenses
One of the best ways to save money is to live at home with your parents or other relatives. If you need to live away from home, look for off-campus housing close to campus or public transportation. Also, take advantage of student discounts on food, entertainment, and other activities.
Look for Affordable Online Programs
College isn’t cheap, but you can still get an education while minimising your debt. You can work at your own pace with online programs, and they’re often cheaper than in-person programs. For instance, a Bachelor of Science degree in business opens up all sorts of opportunities, including accounting, marketing, and management. Online coursework lets you advance toward your goals while taking care of your work and family responsibilities. You may consider this option if you want to minimise your college debt. You might be surprised at how much you can save.
Another option is forgoing college for a professional development program. This option is ideal if you’d like to build on your current skill set. For example, if you’re competent in project management, you can develop your skills using Scrum which is used to help teams collaborate on and communicate about projects. These courses are also often available online as an affordable option. And with a certificate of completion, you’ll be able to feature your new skills on your resume.
More Enjoyment, Less Worry
Overall, you can do a few things to help reduce the debt you’ll acquire while in college, such as starting a side hustle, saving on college expenses, and looking for other funding sources. By carefully managing your finances and considering a professional development program or less costly online degree program, you can limit your living expenses and focus on your studies without worrying about long-term debt.