How to Budget as a Graduate Student

Posted: October 21, 2020 | Author: Morgan Johnston | Read Time: 2 minutes

Creating a budget as a graduate student

Earning a graduate degree can take a lot of effort, time, and money. Finances are something almost all grad students have to think about and can create a lot of stress or worry. It can be handled in a simple and reassuring way, though. Creating a budget is a great way to take control of your finances. It can help you save and organize your income and expenses. Here are some things to consider as a graduate student on a budget:


Tuition and related school costs will most likely be your largest expense. As a graduate student, you will have access to unique financing options, such as financial aid, scholarships and student loans. There are many ways to pay for a master's degree, such as Employer Tuition Reimbursement and attending school part-time.


Having a place to live is one of the most important things, and that’s where a lot of money goes. Make sure to do plenty of research on different areas and types of housing like furnished versus unfurnished, apartments versus houses, and roommates versus private housing. When considering housing in your budget, make sure to include utilities such as water and gas.


Transportation can also be a big expense, depending on your situation. You can ride a bike or use public transportation as a cheaper alternative to cars. Depending on where you live, those might not be the best options, though. If a vehicle is the best option for you, try to get a car with good mileage per gallon so you can save money on gas, and a vehicle that won’t require too many repairs. If you decide to get a car payment, make sure it is something you can afford. Also include gas, maintenance, insurance, and repairs in your budget.


Food is an area that is easy to cut expenses on. Most of us have a habit of eating out, buying prepackaged and prepared meals, or expensive food. Try to use base ingredients when making your meals. Freezing food and that you can eat over time is also a great way to save on time and money. Limit your restaurant spending. If you do eat out try skipping drinks or desserts and just get an entree. Make sure to include an area for eating out on your budget.


To avoid debt and save money, determine what matters most to you and figure out your budget priorities. Ask yourself if you need it or you want it. Make sure to handle the necessities first, add money to your savings, and invest in your future. Set your financial goals and manage your money accordingly.

Produced by SUU Graduate Studies

SUU's Graduate School draws from a prestigious heritage and allows students to pursue a quality education. The master's degree programs offer students the chance to further their professional and educational careers on campus or online.

Tags: Student Life Graduate Programs

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