Photo Credit: Lindsey Holman

Photo Credit: Lindsey Holman

This year, University of West Georgia students Iniki Franklin and Angela Bell decided to offer up some advice and information about budgeting their money each month while balancing extracurricular activities, job searching and classes.

In order to have a budget that never fails, it is always important to understand the definition of it and how it can be applied to your everyday lifestyle.

“Budgeting didn’t use to mean a lot to me when I was younger because I was not paying for a lot of the things that I received,” said Franklin. “Now, budgeting is one of the smartest things that a person can do whether they have the an abundance of money or not.”

Bell believes budgeting means properly handling your money between business and free time.

“It’s important to keep track of your spending because you need to know if you have room for extra spending,” said Bell. “If you are not keeping track of your money, you’re likely to blow it all.”

Many aspects cover a budget such as groceries, gas and cost of textbooks that are either divided by month or a week-to-week basis. Franklin said that she normally receives about $40.00- $100.00 monthly depending on what she might need from the store. Groceries and money for school supplies are what most of the money goes to since Franklin uses public transportation to get where she needs to go. Bell also uses about  $60-$80 per month on food and toiletries.

Franklin and Bell are still in the process of job searching and set their eyes on the goals that are entailed in the careers they would like to pursue.

“I am not employed, but I hope to have a job with a new leasing office that is emerging within the next month,” said Franklin. “In the future I plan to work with Juvenile Correctional Facilities or within a school shadowing a school social worker.”

Along with the responsibility and freedom of a budget also comes pitfalls and restrictions on spending and fun activities.

“The good thing about having a budget is the organization and set of rules it provides,” said Bell. “ The difficulties are being restricted from spending money on the movies, shoes or expensive restaurants.”

Franklin believes the solution to over spending and over indulging is to live below your means every month with your budget. In other words, never pay too much for anything. Always buy important things that are needed and not wanted so there are no insufficient funds.

She also spoke of the temptation that lies in the power of having a credit card instead of cash.

“Pay with cash a majority of the time because sometimes that little plastic square can allow you to make unnecessary purchases,” said Franklin.

Both students also had some advice for freshmen and underclassmen that are just starting out on their own and experiencing the college life style.

“Create a comfortable budget for yourself and follow it no matter how difficult it may be,” said Bell.

Franklin said making a budget and sticking to it would help.

“Write it out so that you can clearly see what you have,” said Franklin. “It is totally fine to look nice and have nice things, but don’t allow that to be your sole objective with the money that you have.”

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