This is part 4 of Income, Expenses and Savings article series in USA. Following tips to save money for college students is shared by Nibin based on his personal experience.
- Tax Filing
- Credit Cards
Coupons Save Money
You could also care much on coupons. Unlike India, in US, price is not really proportional to quality. Also the price varies much in different shops.
For eg. In Khols, you will get the mail coupon of 30% discount. Use that coupon while they have the $10 back for $50 purchase offer.
Say you are purchasing for 200 bucks, and 30% will bring it down to $140. You will get a cashback of $20 which can be used next week for an addon purchase 🙂
In JC Penny, there were coupons for $20 off $100 purchase. I used to take multi-prints of this coupons and split my checkouts to set of $100s. I saved a lot, but I think now they don’t have that offer.
Regarding auto loan, don’t ever go with car dealer finance. Plan ahead of time. Go to nearby credit union and signup a savings account.
Be with them for 6 months as a loyal customer. After that apply for a loan. My loan rate is 2.99% from ACU! Much lower than nearest competitor.
Regarding tax filing, select a good CPA. I know some CPAs which blindly file the returns. Find a reputed CPA (preferably Indian, because native CPA’s wont do much tricks) and sit with them during your filing process.
Together you could discuss much personally and save a lot in tax. Most Indian CPAs know much about the tricks to save legally. Also if you are doing any freelancing works, consider registering a business with IRS. This could help you to claim many bills and expenses as non-taxable.
Don’t pay interest for credit cards.
Use balance transfer wisely. Some cards offer very good plans.
I got Commerce bank credit card balance transfer for 0% interest and $0 fees. Big DEAL for 24 months!!
Save on Phone Connections
Phone rates also can be saved much. Vonage will give you 50 hrs of call to India each month.
By convincing the customer service, you could get it for $24.99(inc tax).
If you are smart enough and can work a little more, go to walmart. They do have vonage reps sitting there. Signup for a 3 month contract @9.99 per month.
After 3 months do the same again, and call customer service to transfer the old number.
Do you know what I did? They give you Motorola 3 set phone device free. I used to do this long back. I sell those in Craigslist for $30. Net effect 3 months vonage charges $0!!
But that is a little over:) I used to do that before settling with family. Now I am subscribed to normal $24.99, but I would say students could try these tricks!!
Hope these helps, and I would post more if I could recollect my past even more :))
Income, Expenses and Savings – Series
- Part 1 – How much money can you save in USA
- Part 2 – Why Saving Money in USA is Difficult with Q&A
- Part 3 – Here’s Why you can’t Save Money in First 5 Years in USA
- Part 4 – 5 Tips to Save Ton of Money in USA (for students only) << this article
- Part 5 – 100 Money Saving Tips for Students
Got more creative money saving tips to share with us?