Knowing how much money you have coming in and going out will help you avoid overspending.
Add up the all the money you receive, including your loan/grant and any money you get from your parents.
You might want to budget just for the 40 weeks of the academic year. If so, divide your annual loan/grant by 52, then multiply it by 40 and you'll have your weekly amount.
Look at how much of your money goes on essentials such as rent, food and household bills. Then make a note of what you spend on things like travel, books, clothes, laundry and socialising.
If you can't see where all your money is going, try keeping a diary of everything you spend, noting every item and the cost.
Once you know how much money you have coming in and going out, work out the difference. If you're spending more than you have coming in, it's time to make some tough decisions.
Perhaps you need to cut down on your socialising, for example? Or maybe it's time to get a part-time job if you don't already have one.
Our sample budget for a first-year student (2016/17) might help you work out how to balance your money:
|Incoming money (40 weeks)||Outgoing money (40 weeks)|
|Tuition fee loan||£9,000||Tuition fees||£9,000|
|Part-time work (£100/week)||£4,000||Household bills (£30/week)||£1,200|
|Food and housekeeping||£2,600|
|Books and equipment||£500|
|Travel (bus pass)||£500|
There are several free budgeting apps available on both iTunes and Google Play that can help you keep a close eye on your spending.