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To Eat or To Learn: How College Students Are Choosing Between the Two + How to Not Have to Neglect Any

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What in the peanut butter and jelly sandwich is going on here! According to a report by Axios, college students are forgoing meals in order to pay for their textbooks since textbooks are becoming too expensive. They state that around 71% of students borrowed money from their parents to buy their books, 41% skipped meals, and 31% took fewer classes. Buying textbooks is at least somewhat financially stressful for approximately 80% of students. Statistics have shown that while the price of recreational books has dropped 40% since 1982, the cost of textbooks has tripled. So what is a college student to do? Here are 5 tips on how college students don’t have to sacrifice learning or eating:

1. Don’t Buy New Textbooks

As we just stated, the cost of textbooks has tripled so this is the obvious first place to cut back on. Instead of buying your books from the campus bookstore, see if you can borrow books from the university library or from one of your friends who may have the same class but during a different time. You can also buy used textbooks at Amazon.com or Amazon.com or even rent them from Chegg or Barnes & Noble’s textbook service. You can also get the digital copy on sites like iFlipd.

2. Limit Eating Out

We know may students are forgoing eating for their textbooks but if you are not one of those who have to take that extreme you still should keep your food consumption in mind. You should have bought into your school’s meal plan, and if so make sure you are using it. You can also save by buying in bulk at Sams club, Costco’s or BJ”s. It’s ok to dine out once in a while, don’t make it the norm.

3. Pick Your Living Situation Wisely

A lot of college students love the freedom of being on their own and choose to live off campus to further display their autonomy. This will cost you. In most cases than not, it will be way less expensive to live in the dorms than it is to live off campus so choose wisely. You can also stretch your dollars if you’re willing to get a roommate.

4. Don’t Buy a Car and Limit Uber

If you get a car then paying for parking, gas, insurance and unexpected car repairs can clean out your bank account. Instead of trying to ball on a budget get familiar with public transportation or even shuttle buses. If you need access to a car, you can always use a Zipcar if you need to travel a long distance.  You should also limit your use of Uber. Since there isn’t cash being exchanged, it is easier to overspend and not realize this until later.

5. Take Advantage of Student Discounts

Student discounts are your bank accounts best friend. No matter what you are purchasing you should ask for student discounts. There are student discounts on everything under the sun. From food to travel and close. Many shops that are close to the school will offer discounts with your student ID. Use them all.

Ash Exantus aka Ash Cash is one of the nation’s top personal finance experts. Dubbed as the Financial Motivator, he uses a culturally responsive approach in teaching financial literacy. He is the Head of Financial Education at BankMobile and Editor-in-Chief at Paradigm Money. The views and opinions expressed are those of Ash Cash and not the views of BankMobile and/or its affiliates.

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Alibaba Reneges on Its Promise to Build 1Million US Jobs + How to Keep Your Promises to Your Creditors

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They say promises are made to be broken, especially if the terms in which you made the promises in have now changed. This is the case with Alibaba and its found Jack Ma. The billionaire says that all bets are off and that the Chinese retail giant has scrapped the idea to create 1 million jobs in the U.S. due to the ongoing tariff war between the U.S. and China. Ma told Chinese media site Xinhua that he made the promise “on the premise of friendly US-China partnership and rational trade relations” that no longer exists today. Ma announced his plans in January 2017 during a meeting with then president-elect Trump, included having small American business owners sell their goods on the Alibaba site. It’s currently unclear what impact this will have on the US economy or China but when it comes to making and breaking promises we know that those decisions can have a negative effect if not managed right. The following are three ways to keep your promise to your creditors:

1. Don’t Bite More Than You Can Chew

I know you’re like, “What does biting and chewing have to do with credit?” but the term simply means don’t take on more than you can handle. We all know it is tempting to take credit because it seems like an opportunity to buy now and pay later but paying later is an understatement if you can’t afford it. Don’t look at the instant gratification of buying something you want but look at the long-term effects on your life and finances. My rule of thumb is, “if you can’t pay cash for it at the end of 30-60 days then you can’t afford it.

2. Redo Your Budget If Needed

Once you commit your creditors, it is important that you keep your promise since paying your bills on time affects 35% of your credit score. Instead of falling into default take a look at your current budget and figure out if there are expenses that you can cut out to meet your credit obligations. If that means cutting out the Caramel Macchiato then so be it.

3. Be Proactive and Transparent

There are billions of dollars that go in default each year and most happen unexpectedly to the creditor. You’ll be surprised at how a creditor will be willing to work with you if you tell them in advance that you are having issues. I’ve personally heard of creditors deferring payments, lowering interest rates, and/or moving payments due to the back of the loan in an effort to help loans become affordable. Instead of throwing in the white flag and saying you simply won’t pay, reach out to them and let them know that you are falling short and see what they can do to help.

What are some other ways you can keep your promises to creditors? Comment below!

 

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HBO and Netflix On Same Page for Emmy Awards + How to Get on The Same Page with Your Significant Other

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Streaming is the new game in town, and Netflix and Hulu have been trying to tell you this for years. Many cable companies have jumped on the bandwagon, and most notably HBO has been catching up in terms of streaming numbers with its HBO Now App. There is no better way to tell if you are winning than to get recognized for your work. Now thanks to the Emmy’s we know who’s the leader… Or do we? HBO and Netflix tied when it came to Emmy Awards, winning 23 each. HBO’s “Game of Thrones” won Outstanding Drama Series for the third time in four years, while Netflix’s Claire Foy walked away with lead actress in a drama series for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II in “The Crown.” The success of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel” saw Amazon become the first streaming service to win Outstanding Comedy Series. Now that HBO and Netflix are on the same page as it relates to Emmy wins, how can you win in your household? The following are three “Don’ts” to win financially with your significant other:

1. Don’t have separate accounts

Nothing spells “something to hide” more than having separate accounts. Even if you don’t have anything to hide the transparency of having joint accounts can allow you to begin to get on the same page financially. Also, having joint accounts allow each other to be accountable. Knowing that your significant other has access to see your transactions may make you think twice about your spending habits and vice versa.

2. Don’t hold money secrets

If you have money secrets like a secret stash somewhere, or a debt bill to the IRS, or the garnishment of your paycheck that can really put a strain on your relationship and cause separation in finances. Be 100% honest and don’t let anything catch your partner by surprise. Be willing to get financially naked with your significant other so that you too can begin building a strong financial foundation.

3. Don’t point the finger about previous debt at one another

Lastly, don’t point the finger about previous debt. What’s done is done and pointing the finger will only push you two away from each other. The goal is to be on one financial accord so make sure that you use past mistakes as learning lessons to move forward not to hold against anyone.

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IBM Sued for Age Discrimination + How to Keep Yourself Valuable No Matter Your Age

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They say age is nothing but a number, but for three former IBM employees, they feel that age has affected their paychecks. According to Bloomberg.com, three former IBM employees have filed a class action lawsuit against the tech giant, claiming they were subjected to age discrimination when fired. The suit coincides with an investigation done by ProPublica reporting that IBM had laid off 20,000 employees over the age of 40 over the past six years. IBM claims that its staffing changes were not related to age but rather to its need to hire workers with different skills as they shift toward cloud computing and mobile offerings. We’ll keep a close eye on this but does age determine your ability to make ends meet or is it about whether you have the ability to do the job? Can you be too young or too old for a job? Age discrimination is illegal, but we all know some employers may discriminate based on age and try to mask it as something else. While there are no foolproof ways to stop it, there are ways to prepare yourself no matter what. Here are four ways to prepare for the job you want no matter your age:

1. Focus on Your Strengths, Not What You’re Lacking

Whether you are 20 years old or over 4o instead of focussing on your age, you need to focus on your strengths. Many young people with limited experience or older people who may not be up to date with the latest technologies focus on what they’re lacking, and this is a big mistake. Do you have the qualifications for the job? Can you bring value to this position? Whatever your strong suits are you should play that up in your resume, cover letter or communications with the recruiter. It’s easy to focus on why you can’t get the job, but the trick is not to let that get to you. Focus on your value!

2. Attack Your Job Search from All Angles

Networking, Answering ads and/or working with recruiters are the most effective ways to land a job. It is important that you just don’t focus on one method but all three. Networking obviously is the ideal way because it allows you to communicate your value directly but the other methods have their benefits as well. Be proactive and use each method effectively.

3. Show/Explain Your Leadership Abilities and/or Innovation

Leadership and taking initiative have nothing to do with age. Young leaders and old leaders can be more or equally effective as those who have the “ideal” age. Focus on your leadership abilities and be sure to display this to your current or potential employee. Also, make sure you are keeping up to date with current trends in your industry. This will allow you to show your innovation and add more value to your company.

4. Ask For What You are Worth

Lastly, ask for what you are worth. Don’t let being “too young” or “too old” deter you from asking for a salary you deserve. In fact, trying to downplay your worth may very well backfire on you. Also, if you have been with a company for a long time and your salary outpaces what the position is worth make sure you are adding to your skill set and not staying complacent.

Following these four tips can help you gain or retain employment. What are some other ways? Comment below>>>

 

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