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Making your money go further at uni

Getting on top of your finances can help you feel more in control of your money.

We’ve put together 6 tips on how you can help stretch your budget a little bit more.

1. Look at where your money's going

Look at where you’re spending your money and try breaking this down into your ‘needs’ and ‘wants’. 

Your ‘needs’ might include your rent and bills, while your ‘wants’ could include eating out or clothes shopping. This can help you see where your money is going and where you could potentially make changes.

Use our budget planner tool to help you break down your spending.

Remember – you don’t have to stop your ‘wants’ altogether. A budget just helps you prioritise your spending a little more. You may find you feel less guilty about spending on ‘wants’ if you’ve budgeted a bit of money for them.

Explore: Budgeting for student life

2. Shop wisely

Before you hit the supermarket, try planning your meals for the week and check what items you already have. Not only will this help you create your shopping list, but it may help reduce food waste. 

It’s also a good idea to set yourself a budget for your shop and resist temptation to splurge at the checkout. 

Explore: How to save money at the supermarket

3. Seek out the best deals

If you’re in shared accommodation, why not start a kitty for things like milk, toilet roll and butter? You may be able to make the most of any bulk-buy deals or eat together and split the cost of ingredients, for example. 

Being a student means you won’t need to pay Council Tax and may get discounts on things like broadband or phone contracts. If you’re not happy with your current rates, it’s worth shopping around.

Explore: How to manage your subscription services and save money

Watching what you spend doesn’t mean you have to stop having fun. Make the most of loyalty cards, discount vouchers and 2-for-1 deals where you can.

4. Use your freezer

If you’re going to be busy studying, try batch cooking meals and freezing them. You can then defrost one quickly when you need it, without having to pay for a takeaway. 

5. Stay on top of your money

Awareness is key when it comes to your spending and having an overview of your account will let you know what’s going on. Getting to grips with some of the key terms you may see when checking your account can help you stay in control of your finances. 

If you've been overspending, there are things you can try to get your budget back on track.

If you're an HSBC customer, you can get a clear picture of your finances and make payments through the HSBC UK Mobile Banking app (on compatible devices). 

You can also use features like Balance After Bills. It shows you how much money you could have left over, once scheduled bills (Direct Debits and standing orders) have been taken out. 

Explore: Managing your money with tech and tools

6. Ask for help

If you’re struggling to stay on top of your finances or you’re feeling anxious about money, speaking to someone you trust can help. 

They may be able to help you with your budgeting or support you in finding assistance if you need it. Starting the conversation can feel difficult, but it can help make things a little easier.    

Explore: How to talk about money