College Students And Their (lack of) Budget

7:49 AM College Lawyer Blog 0 Comments


June 2nd, 2016


College students are often constrained to a tight budget, and with costs of higher education on the rise students will begin to feel even more financial stress. But what exactly are college students spending their money on? According to a study done by Nationwide Financial Group the average college student earns around $1,200 per month through part time jobs and with help from their family. The study also concluded that three out of four (3/4) college students hold (part-time) jobs while in college.

The study also revealed that 84% of all undergraduate students have at least ONE credit card, and two out of every five students have anywhere between $3,000 and $7,000 in credit card debt alone. College students are a huge market with a ton of buying power. According to the study done by Nationwide,  college students make up a whopping 417 billion dollar market. Despite the huge market of college students a report by LendEDU revealed that 51% college students report they are "barely keeping up" financially.

So where does all the money go?

The report by LendEDU offered some very interesting statistics regarding the college students spending habits. According the the study 38% of college students report that their biggest monthly expense is food; this isn't entirely shocking considering that students probably relied on their families for meals in the past. Late night pizza ordering and the convenience of your local Jimmy Johns definitely can add up overtime.

25% of students admitted that their biggest monthly expenditure was on drugs and alcohol. LendEDU CEO, Nate Matherson, called this "quite surprising, but not that crazy" ( Matherson also goes on to add that college students are not fiscally responsible and the students all know it. Over half of the students report that they never received any type of financial management or budget courses. And almost 60% of college students would give themselves a grade of "C" or worse in their money management skills.

So what needs to be done? College tuition and surround costs are continuing to increase and students need to become more fiscally responsible. From one college student to another - I know how difficult it is to manage money when there is not a ton of money to be managed. The best thing students can do is to create a monthly budget and stick to it. Students should also avoid eating out too often as this not only costs a lot of money but it can be unhealthy too.

In order for students to save more money financial management courses should be required in high-school and in college.

Tyler Webb
Editor-In-Chief, College Lawyer Blog
Senior Law Clerk, Levitt Law Firm

If interested in writing for, please contact Tyler at



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