5 Things Every Successful 20-Something Knows About

beauty, broke, broke-ass students, budget, budgeting, cheap, fashion, money saving, thought catalog, tips

Ella Ceron at Thought Catalog posted an incredibly insightful post into what successful 20-year-olds think when they are deciding what to wear in the morning – and we wanted to share it with you. Even though we are Broke-Ass Students, this doesn’t mean that we can’t dress to impress.

Before getting to the incredible article, we wanted to add our thoughts on what is great to wear. Wear what makes you feel comfortable and good – don’t try to overdo what is fashionable if you don’t feel good in it. Confidence is the key to looking fantastic – and we think that if you love what you wear, you will own it.

Our other tip on this subject matter is you should dress like you, not just like the fashion world tells you to. Unless the fashion world is your thing, then go for it!

Remember Broke-Ass Students – don’t spend too much money on clothes you are only going to wear once. A dress that you’re only going to wear once to a 21st doesn’t warrant the $250 price tag! Be smart with your choices and buy dresses you can rock more than once. We believe you can do it!

1. Fit is more important than size. The day the number on the label in the back of your pants matters is the day when every brand decides on one standard sizing pattern…Which is to say, it’s never going to happen. You could be a 4 in a shirt from Old Navy but a 6 in jeans from the Gap and a large in that one coat at Forever 21. Buy what fits instead of what the label says will fit you. A well-fitting size medium is going to look way better than the minor ego boost that society says comes with fitting into a small. (Besides, you’re the only one who’s going to know what the label says, anyway. Nobody goes around championing their size to everyone who will listen (because really, nobody else cares all that much).

2. The more you spend on staple items, the less you spend in the long run. A $60 button-down is going to last you way longer than three $20 button-downs will, and investing in a coat that sees through a few seasons is more practical than buying one that wears out from three months of everyday wear. You don’t have to blow your entire budget on designer labels, but searching for key pieces that have a great fit and solid construction is clutch.

3. When in doubt, create a uniform. Stick to a certain color scheme, or buy things of a similar cut and fit as frequently as you can. (If you know it works, why fix it, right?) Hell, buy 10 of the same shirt if you find one you really love. Cutting those 30 minutes you spend deciding what to wear out of your morning leaves more room to cook your breakfast, buy your coffee, get to work early— or just, y’know, sleep in..)

4. Work is not the place to be taking fashion risks. Well, unless you work in a really creative environment, all those mesh crop tops, plunging necklines and crazy accessories are probably best left for the weekend. Spend less time trying to see how you can bend the office rules, and more time in doing your best work at the office. (It’ll show, and you can go and blow your hard-earned bonus on the weekend in whatever crazy clothes you want.)

5. Dressing for the job you want is not a completely ridiculous adage. There’s an old office trick that says you should mirror what your boss wears; it’s less of being a copycat and more of an emulation. While it might be impossible to match what they wear with your smaller salary (and if you’re an intern, you might not even have that salary at all), take mental notes of a few details here and there, and then polish up your look so that you look capable, presentable, and like someone who is hirable or promotable. We all take cues from appearance, and doing your part to present the picture of someone who has their look together won’t hurt in the eyes of the people who have your future in mind.

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How to go on dates as a Broke-Ass Student

broke, budgeting, cheap, dates, love, money, movies, romance, students

Free(ish) fun ideas for dates when you’re a Broke-Ass Student

Fear not, Broke-Ass Students, for we have the help you need for organising that date. Money can sometimes be an issue when you’re a student, but we have some great ideas to help you guys have fun for free! (almost). It doesn’t always have to be an expensive process guys!

  1. Go for a walk to the Royal Botanic Gardens/Do the Bondi to Coogee walk/Any walk in a place near you!

Because one, they’re beautiful and two, they are free! It’s also quiet enough for you both to walk around together and have a good chat, and getting to know each other. This obviously won’t work if it’s raining, so this one is probably better for a sunny day. Get walking!

  1. Go to a trivia night at your local pub

More than likely on a trivia night there will be a special cheap deal on for food and/or drink, so make the most of it. Trivia is also really fun, and you two are sure to have a good laugh at some of the questions.

  1. Sit down by the Harbour Bridge/lake where you live and have a chat

This one is nice because you’ll be able to talk to each other and get to know each other, whilst also enjoying the beauty. Getting outside is great for dates!

  1. Cheap student nights at the movies!

At most movie complexes this will be a Tuesday night, but it really depends on the cinema. Bring snacks from home or your local supermarket and stash them in your bag, because let’s be real – does anyone really want to spend $10 on a packet of Malteasers?

5. Cook/bake something together

This cheap, fun and cute idea means that you two will be able to heat things up in the kitchen. It’s also a nice way to get to know one another!

Don’t forget to be yourself and have a great time. Even if it doesn’t work out, at least now you have a good plan for all of your next dates!

Broke-Ass Student Essential: The Art of Budgeting

budgeting, money, savings, students

I can already see you yawning but believe me Broke-Ass Student life is SO much easier if you know how to budget what little money you have. You may even be able to SAVE (gasp, save money?!) yes save.  Budgeting sounds like a lot of work right? Wrong. Technology has made it easy for us, there are so many different websites that offer. Mint.com is a website that literally does the entire thing for you: it keeps track of all of your spending, categorizes it for you, analyzes it and alerts you if anything is amiss, like if you’re spending more than you’re earning (Guiltyyyyy). If you use the full functionality of the site, it can keep track of everything from where most of your money is going to on your credit card and rent. And it’s FREE.

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https://www.mint.com/ makes it so easy it so easy to keep of every dime and make money decisions you feel good about! You can set goals, whether it be a new car (you’re obviously not that broke) or get out of debt (that’s better) just enter how much money you need, set a date and link your goal to specific accounts so it’s easy to stick to your plan. It has visuals as well so you can keep up to date and track your progress.

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Goals give you something to look forward to, so you keep saving money, creating new goals and enjoying the rewards.

Mint.com provides you with so much detail!! It will automatically separate a $102 ATM withdrawal into $100 cash and $2 fee. And you can easily separate out purchases from one transaction into different categories, just in case you buy groceries, clothing and gifts all at one store.

And these are just SOME of the tools available, you can track your investments, set alerts for bills, you can also get the app which means you can see where you’re money is going while out and about.

Watch the tutorial video below to get a little more insight:

And remember it is FREE! Happy budgeting y’all.

-KL

Cheap things to consider when you’re a Broke-Ass Student travelling on a budget

broke-ass students, budgeting, college, holidays, summer, travel, winter

When you’re travelling and you’re a poor broke-ass student, finding accommodation and food to suit your needs is difficult! We have compiled a list of our favourite tips to help you get through this difficult period.

Airbnb

Sometimes finding accommodation is just too difficult, where the best locations are too pricey and you aren’t looking for a hotel. Airbnb, a revolutionary of technology, allows you to rent someone else’s home or apartment for a certain amount of days. Not only is this a sure-fire way to get you one of the coolest apartments in the best locations, but also it’s proven to be safe.

Travel Card

Don’t just assume that your own bank will give you the best deal on a travel card, it is advisable to shop around. A friend’s experience when looking for a travel card allowed her to get the best deal possible, instead of just going with her normal bank card which would have ended up costing her more! Just as you would research a cool location, make sure you also research your finances.

 

Book in advance!

You are definitely more likely to get a cheaper deal when you plan in advance. But not to fear if you haven’t – student flights can also get you amazingly good deals. Be sure to subscribe to different airlines direct marketing (e-mail) so that you can also ensure that you are the first to know about cheap flights!

Budget budget budget

There is quite honestly nothing worse than getting to your holiday destination and realising that you haven’t quite saved enough cash to get you through it. A couple of weeks before you leave, write out a list of how much each tourist attraction/activity is going to cost you, and how much you’re aiming to spend on food and drink daily. It’s also important for you to factor in other things such as nights out and clothes shopping. It is also a good idea for you to keep a track of these things as the holiday progresses. Keep some extra emergency cash just in case you need it!

Pack your meals as much as you can

Food and drink adds up, and when you’re visiting tourist attractions you are bound to feel the weight of the extra dollars for food and drink. Where you can, pack your lunch for the day by visiting the supermarket before you leave. (Obviously if you are trekking through the Amazon, you won’t be able to do this but we’d like to hope that you planned your food and drink beforehand.) This is bound to save you up to $20 a day, and if you’re going on a 7 day trip – that is $140 extra for you to party with!

Make sure that you stay safe and vigilant during your holiday travels, and we can’t wait to hear about your experiences when you return!

Cheap eating – Recipes for Broke-Ass Students

budgeting, cheap, food, money, savings, Uncategorized

chickenenchilada_acererak

Sometimes it can be difficult to think of recipes each night of the week! It can be even harder to think of something delicious, nutritious but still cheap! Jump onto http://studentrecipes.com/ to find a range of cheap recipes for students.  Founded in 2004 by first year university student, James Bailey, it has many quick, easy and most importantly CHEAP recipes. Some are healthy, some are not so healthy. You can search for recipes via meat choice, for snacks, for parties and there are vegetarian options (eating vegetarian was one of our 10 Money Saving Life Hacks)! Here’s to delicious and cheap food.

Some of our favourites include:

Spicy Chicken Enchiladas:

http://studentrecipes.com/recipes/chicken/spicy-chicken-enchiladas/

Banana & Dried Fruit Breakfast Loaf:

http://studentrecipes.com/recipes/healthy/banana-amp-dried-fruit-breakfast-loaf/

Healthy Moroccan Stew:

http://studentrecipes.com/recipes/healthy/healthy-moroccan-stew-1/

– KL

10 Money-Saving Life Hacks Every Broke-Ass Student Should Know

budgeting, cheap, food, money, savings, students

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1. PAY WITH CASH – that thing called “science” has shown that people are more likely to buy something when using a credit or debit card instead of cash. Try taking out a (reasonable) lump sum of cash at the beginning of each week and only using that for the whole week instead of your card.

2. Before you go shopping consult a coupon website – yes we get that even though your broke as shit you do not want to look like a stingy hobo but WHO CARES? The stores put out these coupons for a reason, for YOU the consumer, to go to their store and use them. Our recommendations – Groupon, Scroupon, The Living Social.

3. Spotify – If you don’t have an account get one NOW. Spotify is possibly the greatest digital music service you could ever download. Imagine having a music library that has pretty much every single song you could ever want. You can get the free version on your computer and mobile (but listen to a couple of ads every so often) or you can get the paid version. You can also create collaborative playlists with friends. Did someone say Mexican Dance Party Remix?

4. Buy a coffee machine – Okay so this may seem like a huge amount of money to fork out but think of it as a long term investment, you can buy a semi-decent coffee machine for just $150. Buy a reusable cup and you’ll also be saving the environment while saving your wallet.

5. Eat like a vegetarian at least once a week – Already I can hear some of you saying “pffft as ifff” BUT I promise you that you can have a cheap, tasty-ass meal without meat. Do it twice a week and you’ll notice the difference in your grocery bill. Head to the FOOD section of the blog to find cheap and easy recipes (both vegetarian and non-vegetarian for those who insist on eating meat daily).

6. GUMTREE, GUMTREE, GUMTREE- Whatever you need check Gumtree first. White goods (washers, dryers & fridges) are well priced and usually still in pretty good knick.

7. Use generic prescriptions – So many prescriptions come in generic form now. You can save HEAPS by using them—just check with your doctor first.

8. Learn to say NO – do you really need that extra large jar of Nutella to get you through the week? Enough said.

9. Buy neutral clothing – Wearing black, white, and grey clothes means that you can mix and match easier without having too many different outfits.

10. Daily deals – Research to see where does cheap steaks on Monday, $3 beers on Thursday, 2 for one Tacos on Friday, and student discounts… Well, I guess that’s what we’re here for. Check here regularly fellow Broke-Ass Students.

-KL