Things have changed so much since I was at university in England. Back then things were a lot easier on student finances. We all got our fees paid and even got a living allowance or grant as it was called. Parents did have to make a contribution based on their disposable income, but really it was a great opportunity for everyone to be able to go to university regardless of their family’s financial situation.
Things are very different now for young people attending university. Fees have to be paid and grants to help with living expenses are very much a thing of the past. Mums should encourage their kids to be frugal and responsible for budgeting.
Work out a budget with your son and daughter. They will have certain fixed costs such as rent, insurance, and course fees. Other things like expenses for food, books, travel and entertainment will not be so easy to predict but it will certainly be useful to talk this over with your university bound child so that you can set a budget together and encourage them to stick with it. You may disagree about the amount they spend on non essentials but it is better to have this conversation at the start of their university life, rather than at the end when the money has already gone!
Parents should encourage their kids going to university to use a student bank account. The earlier that young people learn how to balance their budget and use a bank account sensibly the better.
The great news is that the banks are very happy to help university students. A lot of the time the bank that a student picks in those university days is one where they stay for many years. Student bank accounts often offer great benefits such as 0% interest free overdrafts, credit cards and even freebies such as Railcards.
University education is an amazing opportunity. Make sure that your kids are well equipped to balance the budget!
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