By Michael P Garrett
Statistics from the 2011 and 2012 National Surveys of Latinos shows that Hispanics are becoming more satisfied with their own personal finances. Jorge Soto, a finance major from Paraguay, and Noah Quinn, the senior peer educator for Student Money Management Services at the University of Kansas, weigh in on student finances at KU.
Many college students struggle with personal finance. The cost of rent, tuition, textbooks and other essentials begin adding up, and this is before you can even think about going out for some drinks Friday night.
The average student has never had to create their own budget, and frankly, many don’t know how.
Jorge Soto shared six easy steps students struggling with personal finances can follow in order to become more satisfied with the state of their bank account.
- Get a job. This seems like pretty obvious advice, and that’s because it is. Getting a job is a great way to earn additional income as well as teach responsibility.
- Decide what your fixed costs are and your variable. Fixed costs are things you absolutely have to pay for each month. For example, utility bills, phone bills, rent, food, etc. Variable costs are things that aren’t exactly necessary, but are important to you. Some examples of these include money for going out, money for the movies, money to go out to eat, etc.
- Once you have decided your fixed costs and variable costs, make a budget. At the beginning of each month, add up the total income you plan to make that month or how much of your savings you can manage to spend. Next, add up all of your fixed costs. If your monthly income doesn’t exceed your fixed costs, then you can budget the rest of your income into your variable costs.
- Take a business or economics class. Although not everyone is a business or econ major, taking these classes can provide students with steps to organize themselves and their money.
- Use your resources. KU has a bunch of financial services, including Student Money Management Services, to help students with financial problems. There are even iPhone apps that help you keep track of your budget from your phone.
- Know yourself. The best way to be responsible with money is to know yourself. Knowing what you can and can’t live without will help you budget your money in the way that best suits you.
MICHAEL GARRETT: The 2011 and 2012 national survey of Latinos found Hispanics have become more satisfied with their personal finances and the country’s overall economic direction.
GARRETT: From 38 percent in 2011 to 51 percent in 2012, Latinos have reported they were satisfied with the country’s economic direction. One third of Latinos now report they are satisfied with their personal finances, an increase from 24 percent in 2011. Finally, seventy three percent of Latinos expect improved finances within the next year.
GARRETT: Jorge Soto, a finance major from Paraguay, says working a job is a key step for students who are looking to become more satisfied with their own personal finances.
JORGE SOTO: Work gives you like this extra money for this kind of stuff. Also, it gives you responsibility.
GARRETT: For students who aren’t as responsible with their money, student money management services at KU works with students to educate them on personal finance. Noah Quinn, the senior peer educator for SMMS, helps students reach their financial goals.
NOAH QUINN: One goal is always to educate as much as we can so hopefully they have better financial knowledge by the time they’re done meeting with us.
GARRETT: Student money management services are available for any KU student. For Temas Hispanos, this has been Michael Garrett.