How to Organize Your Bills & Stay on Budget in an Apartment
This article is brought to you by CORT Furniture Rental. We take the hassle out of furnishing your new place so you can do more important things like read this article. Learn more about why furniture rental is the best way to get a great looking apartment.
When you’re living in an apartment while at college, you and your roommates are responsible for paying the rent, your bills, buying groceries, etc. Managing your money sensibly and staying on budget is something you’ll need to be able to do in order to not spend more than you can afford, keep track of bills, and not blow all your savings.
Here are some tips on how to organize your bills and stay on a budget in an apartment.
1. Set up a payment schedule. Your rent and utility bills are all likely to be due at the same time each month — which means it’s easy to set up a schedule or note the due dates on a calendar so you and your roomies can keep track of how much is due when and to whom.
It’s a good idea to sit down with your roommates and figure out how you all want to handle payments — does one person want to be in charge of paying the rent, another the electric bill and internet, etc.? Will you switch off who pays what each month so you don’t need to pay each other back such large sums?
Look up when each bill is going to be due and if more than one person is going to handle it, make sure all pertinent information, like the account name and password, is written down somewhere everyone can access it. Then keep a tally of who has paid which bill for that month and how much it cost so it’s easier to reimburse that person for your share.
2. Make a budget. Figure out how much money you have coming in on average each month, how much loans, scholarships, grants, or work study you have been awarded for each semester, the price of tuition and fees, the average costs of your share of the rent and utility bills, as well as how much you spend on groceries, textbooks, and other expenses.
Once you’ve got all those numbers written down and have made a list of your expenditures, you can see if you have more money going out than coming in and where you may be able to cut some costs or increase the amount of money you’re getting each month.
There are usually lots of little ways you can save money or make money each semester, whether it’s buying used books or borrowing them from the library, selling class notes or your textbooks from last semester, getting a part-time job, or even opting for a lower speed of internet that will be cheaper each month.
3. Pay with cash. When you’re going to pay for something with cash, you’re more likely to really consider whether or not you need that item and if it’s worth the cost. As opposed to when you pay with a credit card and can easily swipe your payment and not have to worry about the expense until the end of the month, you’ll immediately be out of the cash and it will prompt you to spend with more discretion.
4. Don’t overspend. It can be tempting to go out to eat all the time, hit the bars on the weekends, buy name-brand items at full price, and see movies in theaters whenever you want. But all those expenses add up quickly and are unnecessary. Eating out and going to bars is much more expensive than cooking for yourself and eating or staying in — so don’t go out all the time and instead only indulge every once in a while or when there’s a good deal or Happy Hour special or something.
Additionally, when grocery shopping, it’s best to hit the supermarket armed with a specific list of what you need and the knowledge of what’s on sale, along with coupons that can save you some money on the items you’re going to buy. You also may want to buy store-brand items when possible versus name-brand as you’ll save a nice amount of money on items that way as well. Lastly, when it comes to entertainment, keep your spending in check — rather than going out to see a new movie in theaters, host a movie night at your apartment or a Netflix binge session with friends and save yourself the cost of a ticket.
5. Save for a rainy day. Just because you may have some extra money left over after a paycheck or spent less than you allotted for your budget doesn’t mean you have to spend it. If you did manage to stay on budget and even under-budget, put aside that extra money for a rainy day — you never know when you may have a larger bill or some other unexpected expense that you couldn’t plan for.
Use these tips to keep your bills and payments organized and to stay on budget in your apartment — your wallet and bank account will thank you!
Looking for an easy way to furnish your off-campus apartment? Renting furniture from CORT saves you time and money. See how easy it is to get great looking furniture without breaking the bank.
Apply to Write for Uloop NewsJoin the Uloop News Team
Discuss This Article
More Uloop Campus Life Articles
HOUSING LISTINGSSee all Housing Listings
WRITE FOR ULOOPApply to Write for Uloop News
GET TOP STORIES DELIVERED WEEKLY
TOP 5 NEWS ARTICLES
BROWSE OTHER COLLEGES
- By CollegeUC Santa BarbaraCal PolyUC DavisUC IrvineUC San DiegoUC Santa CruzStanford UniversityUCLACal Poly PomonaCSU ChicoCSU FullertonCSU Long BeachCSU NorthridgeCSU SacramentoUC BerkeleyPepperdine UniversitySan Diego StateSan Francisco State UniversitySan Jose State UniversityUSCCalifornia State University-San BernardinoCalifornia State University-FresnoCalifornia State University-Los AngelesUC RiversideCalifornia Institute of TechnologyCalifornia State University-Dominguez HillsCalifornia State University-East BayOccidental CollegeLoyola Marymount UniversityCabrillo CollegeAlliant International UniversityAzusa Pacific UniversityAntelope Valley CollegeBakersfield CollegeBiola UniversityBrooks Institute of PhotographyCalifornia Baptist UniversityClaremont McKenna CollegeCalifornia Pacific UniversityCalifornia State University Monterey BayCuesta CollegeConcordia University IrvineCalifornia State University Channel IslandsDiablo Valley CollegeBethany UniversitySanta Barbara City CollegeFive Branches UniversityWest Valley CollegeWestmont CollegeUC MercedUC Hastings College of the LawPalomar CollegeSaint Mary's CollegeSonoma State UniversitySierra CollegeChapman UniversitySaddleback CollegePacific Union CollegePierce CollegePasadena City CollegeFeather River CollegeCalifornia Culinary AcademyMira Costa CollegeLos Rios Community College DistrictLas Positas CollegeGrossmont CollegeIrvine Valley CollegeMenlo CollegeAllan Hancock CollegeHumboldt State UniversityUniversity of San DiegoUniversity of San FranciscoLoma Linda UniversityFullerton CollegeSanta Clara UniversityChabot CollegeFoothill CollegeNational UniversityButte CollegeAcademy of Art UniversityWhittier CollegeLincoln UniversityMerced CollegeCalifornia State University-BakersfieldSanta Monica CollegeMt. San Jacinto CollegeCoast Community College DistrictRiverside Community CollegeUniversity of the PacificPomona CollegeLa Sierra UniversityScripps Research InstituteDe Anza CollegeGrossmount-Cuyamaca Community CollegeAmerican Intercontinental UniversityArt Center College of DesignCalifornia College of the ArtsCalifornia Institute of Integral StudiesCalifornia Institute of the ArtsCalifornia Lutheran UniversityCSU San MarcosCalifornia State University-StanislausClaremont Graduate UniversityClaremont McKenna CollegeDominican University of CaliforniaEx-Pression College for Digital ArtsFielding Graduate UniversityFresno Pacific UniversityFuller Theological SeminaryGolden Gate UniversityHoly Names UniversityJohn F Kennedy UniversityMills CollegeMount St Mary's CollegeMusicians InstituteNaval Postgraduate SchoolNotre Dame de Namur UniversityOtis College of Art and DesignPacific Oaks CollegePoint Loma Nazarene UniversitySamuel Merritt CollegeSimpson UniversityThe Art Institute of California-Los AngelesThe Art Institute of California-Orange CountyThe Art Institute of California-San DiegoThe Art Institute of California-San FranciscoThe Fashion Institute of Design & MerchandisingThe Master's College and SeminaryUC San FranciscoUniversity of La VerneUniversity of RedlandsVanguard University of Southern CaliforniaPeralta CollegeWestern University of Health SciencesWoodbury UniversityCity College of San FranciscoCalifornia Institute of the Healing Arts and SciencesCypress CollegeEast Los Angeles CollegeLos Angeles City CollegeCollege of MarinOhlone CollegePitzer CollegeSouthern California Institute of ArchitectureScripps CollegeWorld Mission UniversityThe Wright InstituteCerro Coso Community CollegeCollege of the DesertSan Diego City CollegeArgosy UniversityImperial Valley CollegeModesto Junior CollegeShasta CollegeCollege of San MateoCollege of SiskiyousLassen Community CollegeVentura CollegeNewSchool of Architecture + DesignAmerican River College Barstow Community College DistrictBerkeley City College Citrus CollegeCoastline Community College College of Alameda College of the Siskiyous Contra Costa College Contra Costa Community College DistrictCosumnes River College Cuyamaca College El Camino College-Compton Community Ed CenterEvergreen Valley College Fresno City College Glendale Community College (CA)Laney College Long Beach City College Los Angeles Harbor College Los Angeles Mission College Los Angeles Southwest College Los Angeles Trade-Technical CollegeMoorpark College Mt San Antonio College North Orange County Community College DistrictOrange Coast College Palo Verde College Porterville College Reedley College Rio Hondo College Sacramento City College San Diego Community College DistrictSan Diego Mesa College San Diego Miramar College San Joaquin Delta College San Jose City College San Jose-Evergreen Community College DistrictSkyline College Solano Community College South Orange County Community College DistrictState Center Community College DistrictTaft College Ventura County Community College DistrictVictor Valley CollegeWest Hills Community College- CoalingaWest Hills Community College DistrictWest Hills Community College-LemooreWest Los Angeles College Woodland Community College Yosemite Community College DistrictYuba CollegeFashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-San DiegoFashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-San FranciscoAcademy for Jewish Religion-CaliforniaAcademy for Salon ProfessionalsAcademy of Esthetics and CosmetologyAdvance Beauty CollegeAdvance Beauty Techs AcademyAdvanced Career InstituteAdvanced CollegeAdvanced Computing InstituteAlhambra Beauty CollegeAlliant International University-FresnoAlliant International University-IrvineAlliant International University-Los AngelesAlliant International University-SacramentoAlliant International University-San DiegoAlliant International University-San FranciscoAllied American UniversityAmerican Baptist Seminary of the WestAmerican Beauty CollegeAmerican Career College at St FrancisAmerican Career College-AnaheimAmerican Career College-Long BeachAmerican Career College-Los AngelesAmerican Career College-OntarioAmerican College of HealthcareAmerican College of Traditional Chinese MedicineAmerican Conservatory TheaterAmerican Institute of Massage TherapyAmerican Jewish UniversityAmerican Medical Sciences CenterAngeles InstituteAnnenberg School of NursingAntioch University-Los AngelesArgosy University-San DiegoAshdown College of Health SciencesAsher CollegeAsian American International Beauty CollegeAssociated Technical College-Los AngelesATEP at IVCATI College-NorwalkAvance Beauty CollegeAveda Institute-Los AngelesBaldwin Park Adult & Community EducationBay Area Medical AcademyBay Area Medical Academy - San Jose Satellite LocationBeaumont Adult SchoolBellus Academy-El CajonBellus Academy-National CityBellus Academy-PowayBethel Seminary-San DiegoBethesda UniversityBeyond 21st Century Beauty AcademyBlake Austin CollegeBlake Austin College Beauty AcademyBrand CollegeCalifornia Beauty SchoolCalifornia Career CollegeCalifornia Career InstituteCalifornia Christian CollegeCalifornia College San DiegoCalifornia Hair Design AcademyCalifornia Healing Arts CollegeCalifornia Miramar UniversityCalifornia Nurses Educational InstituteCalifornia Western School of LawCambridge Junior College-WoodlandCambridge Junior College-Yuba CityCanada CollegeCareer Academy of BeautyCareer Care InstituteCareer College of CaliforniaCareer Development Institute IncCareer Networks InstituteCarrington College-Citrus HeightsCarrington College-PomonaCarrington College-SacramentoCarrington College-San JoseCarrington College-San LeandroCasa Loma College-Anaheim CampusCasa Loma College-Van NuysCentral California SchoolCentral Coast CollegeCerritos CollegeCES CollegeCET-CoachellaCET-El CentroCET-OxnardCET-SacramentoCET-San BernardinoCET-San DiegoCET-Santa MariaCET-SobratoCET-SoledadCET-WatsonvilleCharles A Jones Career and Education CenterCharles R Drew University of Medicine and ScienceCharter College-Canyon CountryChurch Divinity School of the PacificCinta Aveda InstituteClaremont School of TheologyClovis Adult EducationCoachella Valley Beauty CollegeCoachella Valley Beauty College-BeaumontCoast Career InstituteCoastline Beauty CollegeCogswell CollegeColeman UniversityCollege of the CanyonsCollege of the RedwoodsCollege of the SequoiasColton-Redlands-Yucaipa Regional Occupational ProgramColumbia College-HollywoodComputer Training AcademyComputer Tutor Business and Technical InstituteConcorde Career College-Garden GroveConcorde Career College-North HollywoodConcorde Career College-San BernardinoConcorde Career College-San DiegoCopper Mountain Community CollegeCosmo Beauty AcademyCosmo Factory Cosmetology AcademyCrafton Hills CollegeCRU InstituteDesign Institute of San DiegoDiamond Beauty CollegeDominican School of Philosophy & TheologyDongguk University-Los AngelesDowney Adult SchoolElite Cosmetology SchoolEverest College-AlhambraEverest College-AnaheimEverest College-City of IndustryEverest College-GardenaEverest College-ResedaEverest College-West Los AngelesFashion Institute of Design & Merchandising-Orange CountyFederico Beauty InstituteFlair Beauty CollegeFolsom Lake CollegeFour-D CollegeFranciscan School of TheologyFredrick and Charles Beauty CollegeFremont CollegeGalaxy Medical CollegeGavilan CollegeGemological Institute of America-CarlsbadGolden Gate University-Los AngelesGolden Gate University-Silicon ValleyGolden State College of Court ReportingGrace Mission UniversityGraduate Theological UnionGurnick Academy of Medical ArtsHacienda La Puente Adult EducationHair California Beauty AcademyHeald College-ConcordHeald College-ModestoHeald College-RosevilleHeald College-SalinasHeald College-San JoseHeald College-StocktonHigh Desert Medical CollegeHilltop Beauty SchoolHinton Barber CollegeHomestead SchoolsHorizon UniversityHumphreys College-ModestoHumphreys College-Stockton and Modesto CampusesHypnosis Motivation InstituteInfoTech Career CollegeInstitute for Business and TechnologyInstitute of Technology IncIntegrity College of HealthInterCoast Colleges-BurbankInterCoast Colleges-CarsonInterCoast Colleges-Elk GroveInterCoast Colleges-FairfieldInterCoast Colleges-OrangeInterCoast Colleges-RosevilleInterior Designers InstituteInternational College of CosmetologyInternational Culinary Center-CaliforniaInternational Polytechnic InstituteInternational School of Beauty IncInternational Technological UniversityITT Technical Institute-ConcordITT Technical Institute-CoronaITT Technical Institute-Culver CityITT Technical Institute-LathropITT Technical Institute-OaklandITT Technical Institute-OxnardITT Technical Institute-Rancho CordovaITT Technical Institute-San DimasITT Technical Institute-SylmarITT Technical Institute-TorranceJohn Wesley International Barber and Beauty CollegeKaplan College-BakersfieldKaplan College-ModestoKaplan College-North HollywoodKaplan College-Palm SpringsKaplan College-RiversideKaplan College-SacramentoKaplan College-VistaLaguna College of Art and DesignLawrence & Company College of CosmetologyLe Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts-PasadenaLeMelange Academy of HairLife Chiropractic College WestLife Pacific CollegeLos Angeles CenterLos Angeles College of MusicLos Angeles County College of Nursing and Allied HealthLos Angeles ORT College-Los Angeles CampusLos Angeles ORT College-Van Nuys CampusLu Ross AcademyLyles Bakersfield College of BeautyLyles Fresno College of BeautyMadera Beauty CollegeMake-up DesignoryManchester Beauty CollegeMarinello School of Beauty-BakersfieldMarinello School of Beauty-Castro ValleyMarinello School of Beauty-ChicoMarinello School of Beauty-FresnoMarinello School of Beauty-HaywardMarinello School of Beauty-MurrietaMarinello School of Beauty-NapaMarinello School of Beauty-PalmdaleMarinello School of Beauty-ReddingMarinello School of Beauty-ResedaMarinello School of Beauty-San BernardinoMarinello School of Beauty-San MateoMarinello School of Beauty-San RafaelMarinello School of Beauty-StocktonMarinello School of Beauty-WhittierMarinello Schools of Beauty-BellMarinello Schools of Beauty-City of IndustryMarinello Schools of Beauty-HemetMarinello Schools of Beauty-Huntington BeachMarinello Schools of Beauty-Lake ForestMarinello Schools of Beauty-LomitaMarinello Schools of Beauty-Los AngelesMarinello Schools of Beauty-Moreno ValleyMarinello Schools of Beauty-ParamountMarinello Schools of Beauty-Santa ClaraMarinello Schools of Beauty-Simi ValleyMarinello Schools of Beauty-VictorvilleMarinello Schools of Beauty-VisaliaMarshall B Ketchum UniversityMarymount California UniversityMarymount University - Waterfront CampusMayfield CollegeMediaTech Institute-OceansideMedical Allied Career CenterMendocino CollegeMerritt CollegeMiami Ad School-San FranciscoMilan Institute of Cosmetology-FairfieldMilan Institute of Cosmetology-VisaliaMilan Institute-MercedMilan Institute-Palm DesertMission CollegeModern Technology SchoolMoler Barber CollegeMonterey Institute of International StudiesMonterey Peninsula College
- By State
- By City