Live in the moment = no need to plan for long term?

Living in the moment and enjoying what you have does not mean you can't also have a long-term plan. Bobby enjoys making friends and is always out with them. While it is natural for university students to want to meet new people, this means he spends on food and drinks every time he goes out. As he never makes a budget, he is shocked to find that he has spent all of the money from his allowance and part-time job half way through the month.

Live within your means and save regularly

Matthew understands the need to manage his money. He makes a monthly budget and also keeps a record of his daily spending. Although he is invited to many activities, he never attends more than he can afford. At the end of every week, he checks how much he has spent and how much he has left.

Managing pocket money and income: Spending as you wish?

The above shows that most university and college students need to improve the way they manage their money. If you are a student, no matter how much money you get from your parents or a part-time job, learning how to budget and save is an important life skill. You will then be able to set financial goals for yourself, which will help you hugely after graduation.

Start with a balanced account

You should begin by managing your allowance. Make sure you can pay for everything you need and, hopefully, you will have savings left over every month. If you find this difficult, try to follow the steps below. 

Step 1: Save before you spend

It is better to plan to save before you spend, rather than just hoping to save any leftover money you may have. In this way, you will be able to handle unexpected expenses and achieve short-term financial goals, such as saving up to go on an overseas exchange programme.

For example, start by putting aside a small amount (e.g. 10% - 20%) of your monthly income for saving. You should then think about how much you can afford to spend on your daily expenses, entertainment, going out and other activities.

Step 2: Understand your finances

Different kinds of expenses can be confusing. Apart from basic needs, there are also entertainment and social expenses, as well as education fees. Spend time to categorise your expenses (e.g. food, transport and entertainment) and then work out how much you can spend on each category. When you’ve done this, you will have a much better understanding of how far your money will go.

Use our budget planner. It will help you set a budget and show you how to balance what you earn and what you spend.

Tool for money management - check your expenses without sweat!

Many people find keeping track of their expenses difficult, and complain there are too many numbers to deal with. To help you out, you can install our Money Tracker mobile app on your phone. This will allow you to keep track of your income and expenses anytime, anywhere. You can also set budget to suit your needs and then compare this budget with your actual expenses.

Step 3: Think carefully before spending

There are just too many chances to spend. Whenever you want to buy something, think about how much money you have, and then decide whether this is something you need or can easily do without.

Step 4: Make a plan and stick to it

Put your plan into action. Make a budget and record your daily expenses, then check it at the end of the week. Change your spending plans for the coming week based on how much money you have left. This should allow you to balance your budget. 

Proper money management is like taking part in a marathon. You need to accept the challenge and practice hard so that you are sure you can finish the race.