Proud Parent Introduction

Gail Donaldson

Gail Donaldson

The following post is by Emma Donaldson, my oldest daughter.  She was home this weekend for her sister’s 13th birthday.  As we discussed her college life and what she’s learned, I told her to write a blog post about it!

Emma is a sophomore at Auburn University and majoring in Public Relations.  She has an interest in marketing too and told me a great deal about marketing via social media and Google this past weekend.  It’s so nice to learn from our kids in today’s world but what a great blessing to know that they have learned from us!  Proud parent moment below!

Gail Donaldson

Budgeting Background

Emma Donaldson

Emma Donaldson

Ever since I was little like every kid I had a piggy bank. Every time I got a dollar or spare change I put it in there. I was one of the weird kids that never really spent my money; I always saved it. I even started a savings account at ten-years-old. What kid does that? Me, I guess!

I was taught a little bit about saving money, but really I felt on my own that I liked having something that was mine when I worked for it. Moving into high school I kept up my savings account and every time I got a paycheck or babysitting money I would try and add some of it to that account. This has been helpful as I have moved into college because budgeting is part of every college student’s life.

How to Budget in College

When budgeting in college, we have to think about how much you are getting or giving your college student every month.

Once that number is established, let’s think about what’s most important. Shopping and going out should not be the first priority even though we totally want it to be. If we can’t buy groceries then we can’t buy any new clothes.

So, the first items for budgeting are groceries and hygiene items, like shampoos, toothpaste, and body wash. Things we need; not want.

Note: It’ll take a couple months to figure out what groceries you actually eat every day so don’t be alarmed when your budget changes from month to month.

Always save some room in your budget for emergencies. Like I mentioned before, having that extra money for saving gives you comfort.

Finally, when all of that is taken care of, the leftover cash can be used for going to see movies with friends, or an occasional dinner date. Again, it takes time to figure it out. If you or your child goes over the first couple months of college, don’t worry they will get it eventually! Good habits take practice.

Is There a Way to Not be a “Broke College Kid?”

We all know or remember the stereotypical college kid that always says, “I’m broke” or “I literally have no money. Can you spot me?” No! You need to learn how to budget your money first!

There is a way to not be that broke college kid like we see in the movies or real life. It’s all about the budget. I’ll say it again, IT’S ALL ABOUT THE BUDGET!

Starting to learn how to handle money early in life builds good skills for the future, so when college students grow up and become real adults in the working world they have good foundational skills.

Money Honey!

If you or your student don’t have these skills yet. No need to fret! There is no bad time to start as long as you do actually start!

College is expensive and there is no way around that, but as long as budgeting is somewhere in that plan, there it is harder to get in trouble. So the last thing if we haven’t learned it by now is…..Budget that money, honey!

If you are having money troubles, contact one of the Bond & Botes offices for a free consultation.

Gail Donaldson
Written by Gail Donaldson

Gail Hughes Donaldson is a Managing Partner of the Bond & Botes Law Offices in Montgomery and Opelika, Alabama. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Auburn University at Montgomery, and a Juris Doctorate from Thomas Goode Jones School of Law. She’s been helping families work through the bankruptcy process since she started with Bond & Botes back in 1993 as a paralegal. Read her full bio here.

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