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Eliminating Money Stresses by Staying Financially Fit

Attending college can be a stressful time for any student but throw a Pandemic in the mix and the level of stress can be magnified.

Financial stress is nothing new. A 2019 Financial Wellness survey mentioned 70% of students surveyed worried a little about finances. The magnification of stress experienced by students during the Pandemic showed 50% suffered from housing insecurity and 40% from food insecurity.

Roughly 45% of UNG students (or an immediate family member) experienced unemployment, and 50% experienced underemployment (a loss of regularly scheduled work hours) who filled out a CARES emergency grant application.  One of the best ways to reduce stress is by gaining knowledge.  Gaining knowledge of how to implement a budget can be extremely beneficial.

Without a solid foundation, a home, building, or shed would simply sink into the ground or crumble, and, without a budget, your money would do the same - You Need A Plan. A budget is a spending plan based on income and expenses. In other words, it’s an estimate of how much money you’ll make and spend over a certain time period, such as a month or year. Budgeting isn’t about depriving yourself; it’s about taking control of your money and making money decisions with your goals in mind. Making a budget shouldn't feel like a punishment. You can complete one in six easy steps:

  1. Gather your bank statements
  2. Calculate your income
  3. Create a list of monthly expenses
  4. Determine which expenses are fixed and variable
  5. Total your monthly income and expenses
  6. Make adjustments as needed

Remember, it’s a plan for all of your money, which includes money for fun stuff too but remember to track your expenses to identify your wants vs. your needs. Tracking your expenses can be a means of identifying which expenditures are legitimate expenses. Managing those legitimate expenses can be an important plan in managing cash flow.

As you’re managing your cash flow with a plan, you must realize the most important bill to manage is yourself. Once you realize the most important bill is yourself, you are on your way to accomplishing your plan and you will be ready for what life throws at you. Savings is the most important bill to plan for. The process of building a budget also helps identify opportunities to save some extra cash, which you can allocate toward paying down any high-interest debt you have. Thinking of personal savings as the first bill you must pay each month can really help you build tremendous wealth over time. 

 

Watch: Combating Financial Stress

Transcript

Hey, this is Sarah with a student money management center and today I'd like to have a brief discussion on combating financial stress.

Attending college can be a stressful time for any student but throw a pandemic in the mix.

And that stress is magnified Of those students who fill out a care's emergency grant application, roughly.

45 of students said they experienced unemployment during the pandemic and 50 said they experienced underemployment.

One of the best ways to reduce stress is by gaining knowledge, gaining knowledge on how to implement a budget can be extremely beneficial.

Budgeting is important.

Think about it without a solid foundation, a home or building would simply sink to the ground and crumble without a budget, your money will do the same.

You need a plan.

A budget is a spending plan based on income and expenses.

In other words, it's an estimate of how much money you'll make and spend over a certain period of time.

Budgeting isn't about depriving yourself, it's about taking control of your money and making money decisions with your goals in mind.

One other way to reduce stress is to use resources available to you as a UNG student.

The food pantry is a great resource that is available to all night hawks on all campuses by simply showing a UNG ID.

Another resource that could be beneficial during stressful times is the tutoring center College is challenging.

But with 24/7 online course tutoring and face to face tutoring us stress can be alleviated.

A couple other resources is the UNG Cares Grant.

Which is money available for students with specific hardships and the 24 73 65 counseling services that are available to all students.

These resources are helpful.

The student money management center is here for you if you'd like to know more about reducing financial stress.

Check out our blog on the student money management center web page.

By starting with a small amount like $50 each payday and using automatic payroll deductions, you probably won't even notice the deductions after a few months.  You might even find you can increase the amount. Paying yourself first is also an excellent way to pay for planned larger purchases. Do you need new tires for your car in the next six months?

Are you hoping to go on a really nice vacation? By paying yourself first, you're almost guaranteed to make sure money is there when you need it. That means you won't have to scramble at the last minute. Your savings is “Your get out of debt card”, “Your, I lost my job plan” and ultimately “Your stress reduction plan”.

Another stress redactor is knowing there are many practical resources here at UNG which can help! Eating three meals a day is important, but in our current circumstance that may not be easy or even possible for all college students. Let’s face it, food isn’t cheap. On average, Americans spend $250 (per person) a month on groceries, which adds up to $3,000 over the course of a year. That’s a large sum of money for most, especially college students! The University of North Georgia is aware of this and wants to help ALL students. On all UNG campuses, there are food pantries available to every Nighthawk by simply presenting a UNG ID. If you’re in need of food, they can help, but there’s more than just food! The UNG food pantry provides things like, toiletries, cleaning supplies, school supplies, and clothing. Another resource that is available for students is academic support. College is challenging, but with 24/7 online course tutoring, face-to-face tutoring on all campuses and supplemental instruction support, UNG is here to support you along your educational journey.

Students who are facing specific hardships may apply for the UNG CARES II Emergency Grant to receive up to $700 in assistance. Another resources that is available to students are counseling services and career services. The mental health of every Nighthawk is top priority at UNG. The counseling services offer support on all campuses as well 24/7 support through the support line at 833-910-3368. Here at the University of North Georgia, we understand that college can be a difficult time for many reasons, especially right now, but we hope to alleviate some of that difficulty by offering services like our campus food banks, academic support, financial assistance, and counseling service. We are here for you!  

You are not on this journey alone. The Student Money Management Center is here to help. Make an appointment today! Make a Plan today, we can’t wait to see You!

Get Help with Your Money

UNG's SMMC is here to help you with all things money management. Schedule a personal consultation today to get started on your path toward finacial success!

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