Image from Pexels

Image from Pexels

That white blazer I just saw in the window of that new store was to DIE FOR. Oh, that black mini-skirt would be perfect for the next party I attend! OOOH and that clutch? It would totally match my dress for formal! But…if only I had enough money to buy all of the stuff I wanted! Thank goodness for all these seasonal sales recently right?

Based on the introduction of this article, you may already assume that I can be a bit of a shopaholic. However, you may wonder why I am writing an article about how to budget for college when I have a shopping problem. It’s because I know how much money I have to spend on clothes and I know how to make my budget last of course!

1. Make a budget for everything.

Without a budget, there may be times when your spending will get out of control. Because of that, you need to set a limit on yourself.

No matter what kind of phone you may have, a smart phone or not, most phones will have a memo option. What I tend to do is to make a note on my phone of how much money I have, in cash and in the bank. This way, I won’t have to fear about going over the amount that is actually in my bank account. I also made an Excel Spreadsheet on my computer so I can calculate how much money should be allocated to each category; there were categories such as concerts, food, shopping, gifts, etc. I would base my semester budget on my first college semester, and it actually works! I love food so I make sure to save about $150 because it’s better to estimate higher than lower. Concerts can have about a $100 budget for maybe a concert or two, but if you know that there are a lot of concerts during that semester, allocate more. Basically, plan your budget on what your plans are for that certain semester. You wouldn’t want to bail on a road trip with your friends just because you didn’t save up enough money!

2. Use the cheapest alternative for everything.

What are a bargain shopper’s best friend??? (WHEN SHOPPING OF COURSE) COUPONS!! & sales as well! That’s why you must always be aware of sales. Most clothing stores send out emails daily, or every other day, stating that they have new arrivals or sales occurring. If you don’t want to check each email individually (it does get tiring after awhile), just check what the subject and see if it is interesting or not. If it is a big sale, most retailers will have the subject as “BIGGEST SALE OF THE SEASON” or something along the lines of that.

When you want to buy something online, ask around to see if anyone else needs to buy from that certain store as well. Most of the time, there are shipping and handling fees, and usually the cheapest fee is around $4.99. On the bright side however, there is usually a minimum of $50 to be spent in order to receive free shipping. When shopping with friends, you will easily be able to cut down on shipping fees, so don’t be shy to ask! Also, don’t forget to sign up on Ebates and get the full review of the Acorns app! You will be able to get cash back for certain stores!

3. Don’t carry around a credit card with you.

Having a credit card with you at all times will just make you spend more. At times, people think that having a credit card is like having unlimited cash. They forget that they eventually have to pay that credit card bill at the end of the month. Because of this tendency, it would just be better to keep that piece of plastic at home! Better yet, just keep a small amount of money, your id, and phone with you, and you are pretty much set. That way, you won’t go overboard with shopping!

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