Leaving home for the first time and having responsibilities such as managing finances can be both exciting and terrifying at the same time. Balancing the books to afford your student lifestyle can be difficult. We are here to help with some budgeting for Sheffield student accommodation tips.
Financial worries can have a huge impact on your life as a student, affecting everything from your academic success to your diet and quality of sleep. A savethestudent.org survey carried out in 2020 found that 58% of students reported that their mental health suffers as a result of money issues.
Student Accommodation costs
No doubt the biggest expense you will accrue through any academic year is the cost of your Sheffield student accommodation. It’s not really something you can skip. Being homeless and sofa surfing isn’t really conducive to help you get the best out of your student experience. With rents ranging from anywhere between 70 p/w to £160 p/w, You will pay more towards your rent than all other living costs combined.
Looking at what’s included in the property and its location is an important factor when deciding on which property is perfect for your outlay. Consider that although moving out of the city centre may be cheaper, what would the costs be of travel and transport to university? In most cases taking a property that has bills included will also be beneficial to keeping your outgoings down. Connection fees and having to monitor the usage of services to keep within budgets won’t be as important when taking out an all-inclusive option. But remember that there will be a fair usage policy in place.
Look at managing your budgets
Looking in advance
Looking earlier as opposed to later is a must when finding student accommodation. Properties go fast and to find the best within your budget you should start looking as soon as possible. It can give you a clearer picture of your annual requirement for both the property, furniture or kitchen equipment you may need and any other service costs.
Budgeting for Sheffield Student Accommodation Tips
Look at money coming in
For most students, the majority of their income will be through a means-tested maintenance loan. The current maximum rate for the academic year 2021/22 is £9488 which would definitely cover your rental outgoings, but what about day to day living such as books, food, travel and social costs? Would income coming from savings, scholarships, bursaries or grants cover this?
Look at additional sources of income
No one wants to work whilst at university, but depending on your circumstances you may need to get a part-time job to help with the expense of studying. One thing to remember is that although there is a financial reward to getting part-time employment, it brings into play more time management obstacles. Having to fit work in with lectures and study time as well as your social life can add an extra dimension to your work/life/study balance. However, being able to add such experience to your CV will undoubtedly help your employability when leaving university.
Bank of Mum and Dad
If your wanting to be completely financially independent then this would be your last resort, However, it is always handy to bear in mind that family members might be able to help out. Just be sure to ask not to assume and give them plenty of notice.
Ways to save on your expenses
Everywhere wants your business and so student discounts are rife, from National and online retailers to the local independents. Sheffield is a student city and the shopkeepers know it! savethestudent, unidays and studentbeans are just some of the fantastic websites out there that curate the best current student deals. In today’s economy deals are to be had everywhere. You just have to know where to look!
Cooking at Home
We don’t provide kitchens in all our properties just to look nice (Although they do). Cooking and learning to cook at home provides a cheaper alternative than eating out and takeaways. We’re not saying don’t go out for that occasional cheeky Nandos, just keep in mind that one meal out could probably cover the cost of a week’s groceries if you’re a savvy shopper. Tasty and budget-friendly meals don’t have to cost the earth. Selective meal planning, portioning and shopping can stretch your food budget much further than you think.
Do you need it?
Are you an impulse buyer? If so, one way to manage your expenses is to ask yourself questions when purchasing goods. Think to yourself do you really need it or just want it? is there an alternative that is cheaper or another way to accomplish the goal?
Use a budgeting tool and stick to it!
Budgeting is an integral part of personal financial management. Especially when dealing with restricted income like maintenance grants. Many guides and budget calculators are available online. Creating a budget is the easy part, sticking to it becomes another issue. Not sticking to your designated spending can easily put you into financial difficulty. Not planning for certain costs or unforeseen expenses can really put a strain on your health and lifestyle. It always helps to be over cautious when budgeting. Coming in under your budget can feel like an accomplishment.
Work out your weekly budget after your essential expenses like rent, bills and food. Then you’ll know what you’ve got left each week to spend on non-essential items. It’s better to budget your expenditure per week rather than per month, as it’s easy to go overboard at the start of the month and be penniless by the end.
Prudent financial planning for your academic year will not only help you with affording your day to day expenses. Having the resources to get the correct study/life balance can help you enjoy the fullest university experience possible.
About Thornsett Properties
Thornsett Properties have provided Sheffield student accommodation since 1985. We supply housing to over 650 students studying at Sheffield Uni and Sheffield Hallam Uni every year. Designed to fit with budgeting for Sheffield student accommodation. Thornsett Properties are property owners and not agents, meaning all our properties are managed by ourselves and not reliant on third parties. Our aim is to help you succeed whilst living and studying in Sheffield student accommodation