Monday, September 26, 2011

5 Money Saving Tips for College Students

My sophomore dorm room. (Sharp hall, Universit...Image via Wikipedia

The time you spend in college can be incredibly beneficial. Not only are you getting an education, but you're experiencing first-hand what it is like to live on your own with minimal outside support. While college life can be incredibly exciting, these first few years can have a devastating effect on your financial future if not planned out properly. Here are some financial tips everyone entering college should keep in mind.

Create a Budget

Now is the time to learn how to create a budget and stick to it no matter what happens. You are likely on a very fixed income, based on what you are getting for living expenses from your student loans, from family support, or from what is likely only a part-time job. Make a list of your known expenses, like meals not covered under your university meal plan or gas for your car, and make sure you have enough set aside for these things each week. You'll also want to set a limit on any excess spending you do.

Stick with the Dorms

Many colleges require freshmen to live in the on-campus housing. Other students may prefer the freedom of living in off-campus housing, renting apartments or houses alone or with others. Take a very close look at the expenses involved with both. You may actually find the convenience of living in a dorm to be a bit less stressful, especially during the more intense years of schooling near the end of your degree program. Besides, in a dorm you will not have to worry about the unreliability of others to pay their portions of the bills.

Take Advantage of Student Discounts

You were issued a student ID when you started class, so make sure you use it. There are dozens of places all over the country that give discounts to students. Showing your college ID to your movie theater and local restaurant can save you a considerable amount of money – and those are far from the only places offering discounts, too. Always ask if a student discount is available.

Open a Savings Account

Mom and dad won't always be able to bail you out of difficult financial situations. Start a savings account now and you won't find yourself high and dry the day after graduation. It doesn't matter if you deposit $5 or $50 – adding something on a regular basis will ensure you have some cash on hand when you really need it.

Ditch the ATM Card

Your ATM/debit card may make purchases incredibly convenient, but it also makes it easy to lose track of your expenditures. Use your card to withdraw the cash you'll need for the week and then leave the card at home. You'll have a better visual idea of how much money you have left and you'll be less likely to tap into next week's budgeted cash in advance. You'll also want to make sure you are using a bank that does not charge ATM fees. If your bank doesn't have a local branch near your college you may want to consider switching.

Keep a close eye on your finances throughout your college years. Doing so will ensure you don't end up in debt before you have a decent job and will make transitioning to the working world that much easier.

About the Author: Deborah Blair is a full-time writer with a major focus on personal finance. She writes about saving money, credit repair, and finding secured bad credit loans for those with poor financial histories.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Stock Carnival Ecstasy - September 22, 2011

Image representing Intel as depicted in CrunchBaseImage via CrunchBase

Welcome to the September 22, 2011 edition of Stock Carnival Ecstasy.We have the top 12 articles for the period presented below. Everything Finance has a great post on the Disadvantages of Investing in Treasury Bills. We have an article on CNBC's Virtual Stock Game from Kyle Taylor. Alexander takes a look at Intel. And finally Steve Zussino sees Netflix falling from its 52 week high.

Everything Finance presents Disadvantages of Investing in Treasury Bills posted at Everything Finance, saying, "Many people like investing in Treasury bills because they are generally safe, when compared to other investments. Indeed, even with current economic troubles, Treasury bills are still backed by the most stable taxpayer base in the world."

Sandra Adams presents Improving Your Credit Score posted at Credit Cards for No Credit, saying, "The best advice that you can ever get for having a good credit score is to responsibly handle your credit over a long period of time. For those who haven’t done that, there are a few things that you can do to begin to repair your credit score."


Maria Clark presents How is a credit score calculated? posted at Credit Cards for Bad Credit Resource, saying, "The payment history category of the credit score formula considers account payment information, adverse public filings, delinquencies, amount of payments that are delinquent, and the number of past due items."

Tommy John presents Should they Abandon the Alternative Minimum Tax? posted at 2010Taxes, saying, "In recent negotiations on the debt ceiling, one of the considerations under discussion was that Congress remove the Alternative Minimum Tax"

Carlos Sera presents A Required Rate Tale | Financial Tales posted at Financial Tales, saying, "The real question that should be asked is—How much stock should investors hold? Old or young has nothing to do with it. So, how much stock should investors hold? The answer is—as much as required to earn the returns necessary to achieve your goals and is why I call this tale A Required Rate Tale."


Kyle Taylor presents Win $1,000,000 Playing CNBC's Virtual Stock Game posted at The Penny Hoarder.

Alexander presents Is Intel A Good Buy? posted at Dividend Stocks, saying, "Founded in 1968, Intel Corporation (INTC) has grown into a 104 billion dollar company that today dominates the global semi-conductor industry, providing processors for the PC and server market. It is only second to Korea’s Samsung Electronics, with a market cap of 118 billion."

Dividend Growth Investor presents Dividend Stocks – The safest investment in the world posted at Dividend Growth Investor, saying, "Companies that raise dividends also provide a rising stream of income which retirees could use to live off their portfolios. As a result, investors would not have to worry about selling their growth stocks when the market tanks in order to pay their monthly expenses."

Steve Zussino presents Is Netflix (NFLX) stock headed for the bottom? posted at Canadian Personal Finance, saying, "One of the main reasons I don’t like to invest in technology companies or technology services anymore is that the next ‘big thing’ can come along and convince the consumer to switch brands.

An example is Netflix (NFLX).

Their Unique Selling Proposition is that they are an easy way to view a huge library of videos and you can watch on a variety of devices and you do not need to buy cable anymore at an affordable price."

Mutual Fund presents What is a Mutual Fund? posted at Mutual Fund, saying, "Here is an article that explains in simple terms what is a mutual fund. If you have no idea about mutual funds, this article will explain that."


Deborah Brown presents Secured v. Unsecured Card posted at First Credit Card, saying, "An unsecured credit card is a traditional credit card where the bank issuing the credit card does not require the card holder to make a deposit or otherwise pledge security for the credit line."

Kyle Taylor presents 5 Weird Ways to Make Money Recycling posted at The Penny Hoarder, saying, "Collecting cans for the recycling center is not the only way to make a buck with your recyclables. Check out these 5 new, very weird ways to make extra money recycling…"

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of stock carnival ecstasy using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Stock Carnival Ecstasy - September 8, 2011

How to Repair Your CreditImage by Chris Pirillo via Flickr

Welcome to the September 8, 2011 edition of Stock Carnival Ecstasy.In this issue we have 17 stories that you will find interesting dealing with investing, credit, debt and finance. Everything Finance gets us started with a post on budgeting for couples. For those looking to make 401k Withdrawals, Justin Tops has a nice article on what to know and understand. A. Lee takes a look at the resignation of Steve Jobs. And finally, Tim Fraticelli takes a look at the volatility in the markets as of late. Hope you enjoy the articles, bookmark, share, tweet, like on Facebook, and come back soon.

Everything Finance presents 5 Creative Ways To Save Money On Your Cell Phone Bill posted at Everything Finance, saying, "#1 – Employee and student discounts
Most major cell phone providers – including Sprint, AT&T, and Verizon – offer special discounts for employees of..."

Everything Finance presents The Best Credit Cards For Job Seekers posted at Everything Finance, saying, "It might not be the first big thought that enters a job seeker’s mind, when checking out employment ads and scoping around websites such as Monster or Craigslist."

Everything Finance presents The Best Credit Score to Buy a Car posted at Everything Finance, saying, "When you go to buy a car, you want to get the best deal. While getting a good deal does rely on your negotiating skills to a certain extent, getting the most bang for your buck also includes getting a good interest rate on your auto loan."

Everything Finance presents Budgeting Tips for Couples posted at Everything Finance, saying, "The days where your biggest decision as a couple was what movie you were going to watch are over. Now, you are taking a new step as partners – perhaps you have recently moved in together, or are considering starting a family.

Read more:"


Tarik presents Make Vacation Time Every Day – 3 Steps to Retiring Today posted at Success starts today, saying, "You will never need a vacation again."

Linda Rodriguez presents How has credit grown? posted at Credit Cards for Fair Credit, saying, "The growth in the debt burdened carried by American households began to accelerate in the 90s. Adjusted for inflation, the average family in the 1990s had a debt to income ratio of 85%."

Maria Clark presents Handling Credit Card Debt posted at Credit Cards for Bad Credit.

Mike Piper presents You Call This an Efficient Market? posted at The Oblivious Investor, saying, "Is the extreme volatility of the stock market a sign that it's not an efficient market?"

Marvin Grossman presents Fake Nurses, Fake Patients and Other Strange Credit Card Crimes posted at CardRatings Blog, saying, "The police are searching for a fake nurse who stole some very real credit cards. Fake nurses aren't only out there. Beware of fake patients."

Deborah Brown presents Establishing Credit posted at First Credit Card.

Nathan Richardson presents What is the Average Credit Score? posted at Deals & Tips, saying, "Credit scores are one of the most important factors determining whether or not a consumer will be approved for a loan or line of credit."

Justin Tops presents Making 401k Withdrawals posted at 401k Calculator, saying, "With the economy doing badly, you may be thinking of making a 401k withdrawal. This post outlines some of the things to consider before you do."


A. Lee presents Apple: Steve Jobs Resigned! posted at CRM Help Desk, saying, "When the CEO of the most powerful IT companies leaves, the whole industry will see shake up!"

Tim Fraticelli presents Why is the Stock Market so Volatile Now? posted at Faith and Finance, saying, "August has been an extremely volatile month for the stock market. With daily surges and dips will above 400 points, both the media and investors are asking the question “What’s happening to the markets?"

rob quigley presents The Rally the Past Two Weeks Has Been Unconvincing posted at The Chartographer's Map Room.

stefanz presents Stock buybacks and issuing of shares - Investing: Strategy, Risk, Tools, and more... - Skuzet posted at skuzet, saying, "There are several reasons why companies announce stock buyback programs and issue shares. But what are the effects of the stock buybacks and share issuing? In this article, the different effects are discussed."


Dorothy presents Why would I want a secured credit card? posted at Secured Credit Cards.

That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of stock carnival ecstasy using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.

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