Never run out of money again

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Photo illustration by Jeremy Pierce and Vera Holiday | The Broadside.
Photo illustration by Jeremy Pierce and Vera Holiday | The Broadside.

Without the right planning and financing, you would not be able to be attending school right now. So how can you keep planning ahead, save money and not forget any expenses?

“The college years can be some of the most difficult when it comes to financial success,” said Melissa Jordan, an independent person finance consultant in Bend.

The first step when creating a budget is evaluating your monthly income. Include income from jobs as well as assistance from family and the government, according to Jordan.

“To determine what your monthly income will be, take your net income from the previous three to four months and average it,” Jordan said. While income may be always fluctuating, especially if you do not have a steady job or you work for yourself, this is a good place to start, according to Jordan.

The second step of budgeting is planning your expenses and staying within the guidelines you set for yourself.

“The major categories you need to budget for are school and living expenses, insurance, entertainment and savings,” Jordan said. Doing this will help you see where your money is being spent each month and where you can cut back to save money.

Kayla Thomas is a student at Central Oregon Community College who has a plan to let no expense go unplanned or unrecorded.

“I start by writing down my mandatory monthly expenses, deciding how much I need to save that month, and then allowing the rest to be used for non-mandatory expenses, like entertainment or little extras,” Thomas said.

“One of the most important elements of every budget is saving money,” Jordan said. “This needs to be split into short-term and long-term savings plans.”

Short-term savings include saving for a used car, a deposit on an apartment or a new cell phone. Long-term savings include preparing for large expenses, such as a wedding, the purchase of a first home, graduate school or depositing into a retirement savings plan, according to Jordan.
“Planning ahead of time and cutting back on unnecessary expenses will set you up for long-term financial success,” Jordan said, “and this will better prepare you for the future.”

 

Rosalinda Corning
The Broadside
rcorning@cocc.edu

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