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Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

  • after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.
  • after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Image courtesy of California Business Journal

Housing is an important part of college life, and can bring about some of the toughest decisions. Should you live on campus, rent an apartment, or stay with your parents? Each choice has its benefits and drawbacks and are desirable for different reasons. Having your own studio apartment can bring you a ton of personal benefits, but the toughest part about it is the expense. Total privacy and independence has a cost, and you will need to have a plan in place to pay that cost. 

A studio apartment will give you complete privacy and independence, something that you can’t get as easily in a dorm. It will be your personal space that you can do whatever you want with, and that makes it completely worth the cost. As a college student, it can be hard to cover the cost of a place without a roommate, but it is definitely not impossible. There are a few things you can do to make sure you can afford a studio apartment. 

Get A Regular Job

You’ll need a regular stream of money for this. 

To afford a studio apartment on your own, you will likely need a job. Having a steady job will give you a regular stream of income that you can survive on, even when you’re not working full time. You’ll need a job where you can work for enough rent money, and still prioritize school while you do it. The job needs to be flexible enough so that you can schedule work around your class time. You should give yourself the option to work the minimum needed to pay your rent and feed yourself. If you have the time and the energy to work for more, that’s great, but you should have that option rather than go with a job that requires you work too many hours. 

A job that allows you to focus on school primarily is ideal, and thankfully, there are many of those around. Some of the best jobs for college students include a nanny, call center representative, server, tutor, and barista. Some other great jobs include receptionist, cashier, restaurant host, library clerk, and sales associate. These are jobs that usually offer their workers flexible hours and don’t require strict 9 to 5 schedules. So it's easy to schedule work around your classes and also make sure that you have enough time off to study, have fun, and rest. 

Become An Independent Contractor

Independent work is really flexible. 

A bike with a Grub Hub order on the handle and one on the crate.
Delivering food this way is fun and profitable. Image courtesy of Student Debt Relief

When you work independently, you get to completely set your own hours. You can take or reject whatever jobs you choose to and sometimes you can even set your own pay. You also won’t have a boss that you need to report to. You will do everything on your own, and won’t have to ask for permission to take breaks or take some time off. When you’re an independent contractor, you can choose to work only when you need to. You can stop working once you feel set on money for the month and you can always work extra if you want or need extra money for anything. 

Many people make a decent living doing all types of independent work, and there are several types that are ideal for college students. One of the most popular ways that many people, including college students, work independently is through food delivery services. You can deliver for companies like DoorDash, Grub Hub, and Seamless. To do this job best, you’ll need a car, but some companies will allow you to deliver by bike. You can also take people to and from their destinations driving for Uber or Lyft. Freelance writing, design, photography, or a number of other things can also work depending on your skillset. These are jobs that you will need to get the right set ups for. And that can include just laptops and tables

Sell Your Things Online

Online Marketplaces can make you some cash.

One way to make some money is by selling your unwanted possessions online. There are several online stores that are set up so people can post photos of the items they want to get rid of and then sell them to customers on the site. Some of these websites include Poshmark, eBay, and Etsy. There are also several more of these websites to choose from. You just have to figure out which website suits your needs the best. You have to find out which website you prefer to navigate, which pays best, and how to use it to the best of your ability. 

You can make a good amount selling things in this way, but it all depends on what you have. If you have a lot of unwanted items that can go for a good price, selling them can help you with your rent and even become a regular money making strategy. Even if you don’t have that many things to sell, selling a few will still be beneficial. Making a bit of extra money for food or other expenses will free up more of the money you earn from your main income. That way, you can use that money for the rent. 

Get A Roommate

Having a roommate means that the bills aren’t just your burden. 

Two people sitting on a couch together. One is holding a smart phone and a mug and the other one is playing the guitar.
Living with someone else can be a lot of fun. Image courtesy of Rent

Getting a roommate will make rent a lot more affordable for you since you would be splitting the bills in half. A studio apartment doesn’t always have to be for just one person. Sharing one while you’re in college can be a great idea. It would be almost just like sharing a dorm room together on campus housing, but it would still be your own independent space where you won’t be beholden to the school’s rules when you’re at home. That way you can have somewhat of a typical housing situation with a roommate while sharing the benefits of living in your own place together off campus. 

Splitting a studio apartment between two people will make paying the bills so much easier. You will need to work less to make ends meet and will likely have a lot more money left over after you pay your bills. That will open your time up for study, fun, and rest rather than feeling as if you have to work all the time to maintain your lifestyle. It can also be fun to share that experience with someone for the first time. If you want to make bills a lot easier on yourself, go ahead and search for a roommate!

Create A Budget For Your Income

Knowing how much you have to spend for the month makes your choices easier. 

A person sitting at a table counting money next to a notebook, phone, headphones, laptop, and keyboard.
Keeping track of your money is something you need to do. Image courtesy of WealthTender

Budgeting may not be something you’re used to since you haven’t had to pay your own bills up until now, but it is not something that is too complicated to get into doing it. This requires writing things down. You can use a notebook to write this down or the notes in your phone. Whichever will be easier to access for you is best. You may need to glance at your budget to remind yourself of what you started with throughout the month. 

When keeping a budget, you should keep track of everything that you can. You need to write down your monthly income, and if you work on your own, you need to keep track of how much you need to make in a month and how many hours you will need to make that amount. Keep track of your fixed expenses. Write down all the bills you will have to take care of. Now that you’re in your own apartment, you will have to pay for utilities. 

It's a good idea to find a place that doesn’t require you to pay too many utilities in the first place. At some apartments, you have to pay for water/sewage, electricity, gas, and maybe more. In some, you will only pay for one or two of these, or you won’t have to pay for any at all. You’ll need to choose an apartment wisely so you have the minimum number of bills to pay. 

You should also keep track of your variable expenses. Aside from bills, your expenses usually change from month to month, and you need to make sure you have enough to handle those expenses. Your fixed expenses should be taken care of first, and you need to make sure that you have enough for your other necessities like food and physical care needs. Depending on how certain bills or work hours fluctuate, you can be left with different amounts of money each month. You need to prepare to have lots of extra money some months and less during others. You need to make sure you can have all your needs taken care of in either situation. 

Track Your Spending 

Keeping track of what you spend will prevent any surprises. 

Tracking your spending will help keep you on track with your spending and help you keep within your budget. It might feel like a hassle to keep track of everything you spend, but it will prove to be really helpful. You don’t want to think you have enough money for something, but then find out that you actually don’t at the wrong time. Knowing how much you have to spend and how much of that you’ve spent already will help you have peace of mind and comfort. Keeping track of your spending can also encourage you to spend less. If you don’t keep track, you may spend a bit recklessly, but not notice it. Keeping track can make you more responsible with your spending. 

You can also help yourself spend more responsibly by labeling your spending based on necessity and non necessity. Necessities need to be prioritized and you can focus on having the non necessities after you’ve gotten them taken care of. Furniture is a necessity that you will have to plan around initially. And if you can, you should try not to spend all your leftover money on fun items. If possible, try to save some for next month. When you track your spending to stay on top of your bills, saving money can even become a fun goal to accomplish. See how much you can save at a time before having to spend it. Keep an emergency fund if you can. 

Consider Campus Owned Property

Campus properties do a lot to help students. 

A woman standing in a living room next to a tall bookshelf with a TV on top.
Your school might have some great off campus housing to offer. Image courtesy of One Kings Lane

It's a good idea to check and see if your school has off campus housing. Many schools offer housing options to students who want to live near campus but not on campus housing. Campus owned housing tends to be cheaper and more controlled to help out students. While you will likely have to pay for utilities in the average studio apartment, you most likely won’t have to when it comes to campus owned housing. Campus owned housing makes things a lot easier for students by letting them pay a single fee for the whole apartment. Everything is included in the rent. 

This way, you get all the benefits of living in your own place off campus, but still reap the benefits of using campus housing. It makes so many things more convenient for students. If you find regular off campus housing, you might end up in any location. Other students looking for apartments will most likely end up looking for the ones closest to campus, so those places are likely to go the fastest. There is also a chance that the apartments closer to campus will cost more since those will be most in demand. With off campus campus-owned housing, you can get a studio apartment close to your school for a much lower price than the average apartment. 

Ask Your Parents For Help

Make sure to get help when you need it. 

Now that you’re an adult, you might feel the need to be completely independent and do everything on your own, but that isn’t entirely necessary if you have parents that are willing to help when you’re in need. Your parents could be willing to help with rent or other monthly expenses. You can strike up a deal with them if you need to. Whether that deal says they will help with no stipulations or that you need to pay them back after graduation, your parents’ help can do a lot of good if that is something you have access to. 

A studio apartment is the cheapest style of apartment you can find, but even that can be a lot to handle when you’re a struggling college student without a substantial income. There are still ways for you to afford this set up if it's what you truly want. Nothing is impossible just as long as you pay attention to all the possibilities.