Equifax provides advice on how to manage finances whilst at University
The estimated average expenditure of a student living outside London for 2011/12 was £16,279 and for those in the capital it was £17,428, according to National Union of Students (NUS). With the mounting financial pressure, leading credit information provider Equifax believes it has never been more important that students going to university are more pro-active with managing their finances.“It is vital that students keep a close eye on their financial situation, especially given that for many it is the first time they have to manage a budget and handle large amounts of money,” says Neil Munroe, External Affairs Director, Equifax. “Young people need to be more financially savvy than ever before, but this doesn’t mean they have to miss out on having an enjoyable time at university.”
“With a little careful preparation and budgeting, students can avoid getting into financial difficulty, which will help them deal with the realities of graduate wages. Being careful now could secure the future of their finances, as well as their education and career prospects.”
Equifax’s Top Tips for Finances whilst at University
- Budget - Draw up a budget and continuously review it. Remember to consider tuition fees, accommodation and living costs, not forgetting books, socialising and recreation.
- Check your bank balance often. Make sure you are constantly aware of your current balance so that you can avoid over-spending.
- Make the most of discounts - Take advantage of student discounts at the cinema, shops and on the train.
- Open a bank account before arriving at university. Research and compare charges and longer-term benefits, such as interest-free overdrafts
- Keep up to date - Avoid missing payments whilst at University as this may affect your credit report and could make obtaining credit more difficult in the future.
- University accommodation - Stay for as long as possible as it will be cheaper.
- Part-time work - Get a part-time job and work through the holidays to supplement your student loan.
- Use credit with care - Be cautious with credit cards, view it as a resource for emergencies rather than a way of funding a night out.
- Ask for help - If you’re in financial difficulty, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Speak to a bank’s student advisor or the welfare officer at your Students’ Union. Or contact the Citizens Advice Bureau, CCCS or National Debtline)
- Watch out for fraud - Be vigilant against fraud. As a student you will probably move around a lot and share accommodation so your personal details could be exposed. Invest in a shredder and check your credit report once a year to ensure you have not fallen victim to ID Fraud.
The Equifax Credit Report is accessible for 30 days free simply by logging onto www.equifax.co.uk. If customers do not cancel before the end of the 30 Day Free Trial, the service will continue at £8.99 per month, giving them unlimited online access to their credit information and weekly alerts on any changes to their credit file. It also includes an online dispute facility to help them correct any errors on their credit file simply and quickly.
The Equifax app is available free from the Apple iTunes Store on iPhone and iPad and from Google Play for Androids.
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Equifax is a global leader in consumer, commercial and workforce information solutions, providing businesses of all sizes and consumers with information they can trust. We organize and assimilate data on more than 500 million consumers and 81 million businesses worldwide, and use advanced analytics and proprietary technology to create and deliver customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers.
Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax operates or has investments in 18 countries and is a member of Standard & Poor’s (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol EFX. For more information, please visit www.equifax.com.