Tips for using student loans to pay for living expenses
Updated on May 31, 2019
Student loans are primarily intended to pay for college tuition, but they can also be used for many other expenses related to pursuing your education. After your student loan is disbursed to your student account, any money remaining from your student loan will be given to you to use for living expenses, books, transportation, and other school-related supplies.
Student loans can be used to pay for many things, such as:
• Tuition costs
• Transportation costs
• Books and supplies
• On-campus living expenses (room and board)
• Off-campus living expenses (housing and utilities)
• Fees for licensing and certification costs related to your major
Student loans for living expenses
When you are considering using a student loan to pay for living expenses, there are two things you should really take into consideration: how you are going to obtain the loan and what you need it for the most. One of the first things you should do after securing a student loan is to calculate your cost of living and how much of these expenses can be covered by your student loan. Student loans are indeed a great option to help you make ends meet, but you should also carefully budget your living expenses so you don’t put yourself in excessive debt.
How much should you borrow?
It’s also important to understand that you should not borrow anything more than what you’ll absolutely need for tuition and living expenses. For example, if you’re offered $12,000 in student loans, but your college tuition is only about $3,000 and your living expenses will cost about $5,000, it is best to only borrow between $8,000-9,000 instead of the entire $12,000 being offered to you. Your college or university will determine your cost of attendance each year for on-campus and off-campus students. This cost will include tuition, room and board, books, and supplies, and altogether, these individual costs will add up to a sum that you will need to create a budget for when determining how much you should borrow.
Also, keep in mind to never use funds from your student loan to pay for things not related to pursuing your education, such as entertainment, electronics (unless used for educational purposes), traveling, going on a vacation, or any other unrelated reason.