The Saturday Weekly Review

Part-time work while attending University kept me debt free: The Saturday Weekend Review #85

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The Saturday Weekend Review Student part time jobs debt freeTUITION IS PART OF THE BILL


If you want to stay ahead of the game working a part-time job while attending University will help pay for all the extras that OSAP and other student loans might not cover.

Forget about the credit card too because using plastic is only digging yourself deeper into the debt hole.

Not everyone has the time to work part-time while in University but sometimes you have to make the time or face the financial consequences down the road unless of course your education is fully paid for.

Even scoring a weekend job is better than having no extra cash coming in and relying on loans all year. You might find that many students who move away from one community leave open employment spaces so many establishments may be hiring part-time.

Part-time summer jobs or even full-time summer jobs are a great way to bank money so when you return to University or College you aren’t dipping into your OSAP funds or struggling to pay the bills more than you have to.

Going off to University or College is one of the biggest expenses you will have in your younger years. The kicker here is that you are responsible for the bill at the end so as a student you have to make the right financial decisions now rather than the “Party now, worry later” ideal.

I have so many students searching ways to pay off their student loans fast and wanting to know what will happen if you don’t pay them off. Hopefully they are doing research before and not after the fact.

Now that summer is coming to an end and Labour Day is just around the corner I’m finding many students are emailing me for a student budget they can use or tips on how to save money while going to school.


Costs of going to school


While reading a Yahoo article it mentioned the typical cost of going to University will run you on average $5772 according to Statistics Canada for the 2013/2014 year. Remember that’s just an average and depending on what school you are attending that number can rise significantly.

Keep in mind the above number is only for tuition and does not include living costs, entertainment, food, clothing, transportation, books etc. You can expect to see the cost of one year of full-time University study hit close to the $10k mark for some students especially if they aren’t budgeting their money.

I was reading the sample University living expenses breakdown from the University of Toronto and the University of Manitoba and was not shocked at the numbers but I bet they are higher. Accommodations in Toronto may run you from $7300-$14,00o where in Manitoba you will pay $4800-$12,000 for the academic year.

I can tell you for certain that I did not spend anywhere near the average amount for the clothing expenses they are suggesting for Toronto students at $1200-$2000 a year. I’d suggest that students should take advantage of second-hand clothing stores if they can to save themselves some cash.

I’d lean more towards the $600 Manitoba students might spend on clothing but even then as a student that cost would have pushed me financially. I’m a jeans and t-shirt kind of guy and not out to impress anyone but like to look clean.

I thought the $750 entertainment amount for Manitoba could be realistic if it was simply eating out a fast food joints. I’m sure in Toronto the entertainment part of a budget will be much higher especially when there are tips involved, alcohol and buying rounds for friends.

Let’s not forget forking out cash to pay for part of the taxi ride to and from destinations as well. I suppose that would fall under miscellaneous but it all adds up over the course of the year.

It all depends on the student though and whether you want to walk away from school with little to no debt then working a part-time job and earning money while you attend school is a must.

As a student you have to learn to buy groceries on a budget and cook at home. I knew that I was now an adult and if I didn’t get a grip of my finances while I was in University I would only pay the price once I graduated. Thankfully, I did the right thing.

I didn’t have any type of financial loans when I went to University but I did win some grant money and saved up the rest from working. I may have complained a bit here and there when I couldn’t do things my friends could but boy and I’m NOT complaining now that we are debt free including the mortgage and under the age of 40. 

Looking back I realize that all the sacrifices I made although I tend to think they were balanced financial decisions led me to the financial place we are in now.

We have to remember here thought that my wife has half of the financial path to be accounted for here and although she did get OSAP when she went to school it was paid off as soon as possible. She also had no credit card debt along the way, lived at home her first year, ate at home, worked part-time while attending school and was from what I heard more frugal than I.

While I was in University I worked all summer-long to save up as much money as I could and if I could make some cash during the school year I didn’t hesitate. Planning was the key to working a part-time job while in University plus finding an employer that was flexible with hours helped.


Study and save with a budget


I never used a student budget in University but wish I did. My second go at school I was still being frugal and rented a room with the wife but still no budget. It wasn’t until we started this blog that the CBB budget was born. (You can download it for free too!)

I was frugal but I could have saved so much more if I only found a budget to use. A budget is simple and if you are a smart student you will find the numbers that work for the money you have and stick to it. If you can’t get a grip on your finances while you are in school you will find it even harder once you are finished.

How to find a part-time job?

I agree that working in part-time jobs that might get you tips is a great way to earn extra money on top of your wages provided you are a great server. Other jobs that might provide some decent money is cash jobs helping friends and family out or even working in a field that is related to your study that pays a decent wage.

It pays to do your research and to network because you never know who might invite you to work part-time and help you out during the school year. Make sure to scour the online wanted ads for people looking for someone to help them doing odd jobs around the house or to see who is hiring in the community where you are attending University or College.

Lastly, do take advantage of all the student discounts that you can while attending school because they all add up. They may seem like small amounts but do the math over the course of the year and you’ll be happy you pulled out a coupon or a student saver card to score a deal.

Some groceries stores also offer University and College students a discount days so keep your eyes open for that or call to find out. Don’t be shy about saving money because you are the only one responsible for your financial future while attending school and when you graduate.

Did you work a part-time job when you went to University or College? What would you do different if you could go back in time?


CBB at home and the blog



Well it’s been one of those weeks where you don’t know if you are coming or going. My wife has been very ill with a couple of complications that brought us back and forth to emergency at the hospital the past couple of weeks now which took time away from other issues but she is more important than anything.

As you probably know sitting in emergency can take hours and they held up to that promise even though they said we were priority. I understand that but there was no priority as everyone went in as they registered. When you have nothing else better to do you can follow these things, lol.

Needless to say my wife is doing better now although she’s been battling a few pregnancy glitches like trying to sleep at night, headaches and a bit of anxiety wondering when baby will make his/her appearance.

We’ve met with many doctors lately and chatting about breastfeeding and postpartum depression both of which are hot topics in the baby making world. They don’t predict she will have this but it’s more about education and the medical team helping my wife is keeping us both informed. I’m sure there will be lots more chat on this topic after baby is born especially as we learn as parents about bringing a new life into this world.

Other than that I’ve worked hard on the renovations in the bathroom. I’ve got all my shower tiles picked up and ready for install. I have to pick up the shower head and assembly this week so I can get a move on. I’ll be ordering the custom shower door after this is done and hopefully get a move on the heated floors and moving the toilet. I’ll be adding in a new vanity, lights, mirror and all the accessories.

Money is flowing….. $$$


The blog has been quiet since Blue Host shut me down last week. I was hit with spam bots like crazy but Grayson has sorted the issue out and we are back to normal again. I can’t tell you how nice it’s been to have Grayson by my side with the blog especially during this busy time in our lives.

As you know I’ve made some posting changes since baby is on the way. I can’t promise you that I’ll stick to them 100% because anything could happen but just know I’ll be back if I go MIA on you for a bit. I’ll do my best to check in and let you know what’s going on.


Guest posts wanted


If you are a Personal Finance Blogger I’m looking to book High Quality Guest Posts for the months of September and October to help me get through a very busy period. It’s a great way to share your thoughts and the way you write with the thousands of fans who visit each week.

If you are interested please contact me today as spots are filling up.



Weekly CBB posts


If you missed any CBB posts from the week here is the list of posts you can catch up on reading! You will notice that I’m only posting 5 days a week now on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. If you would like to guest post please contact me with your blog post ideas.


Fan deals and inspirations


Garage Sale Canada August Jen

Submit your Brag or Inspiration If you have a brag that you want me to share email me at canadianbudgetbinder (@) [yahoo] [.ca] or fill out my contact form by Friday each week to have your brag considered for the Saturday post.

This week Jen shares more deals she scored for their basement renovations at garage sales and some other bits and bobs. Well done Jen!! I’d be interested to tally up all the materials you found over the course of the basement renovation to see how much you both saved.

Here are today’s garage sale deals:

  • Pot light housings (for the basement): 4 for $5.00
  • Grill mat (for protecting your deck under the BBQ): $1.00 (they were asking $2.00)
  • Drywall corner tape and edging guide (the long yellow thing): $1.00
  • Cold air return cover: $.50
  • Light fixture brand new in box: $1.00
  • Small black tape measure: $.25
  • 2 x Lunch drinking bottles for Adam: $1.00 (they were asking $1.00 each)

Total: $9.75


Making a difference


Debt debs

If you know a personal finance blogger that is making a difference and want to nominate them please send me an email canadianbudgetbinder (@) so I can reach out to them for a feature story.

Note: If you are a blogger who gives back and would like to be featured get in touch with me as I am booking spots for the rest of 2014 and they are going quickly.

Today fellow Canadian Deb from Debt Debs shares her passion for personal finance and her blog with all of you.

Who is Debt Debs anyways?

Debs is a CPA, CMA from Ontario. Her busy lifestyle working and raising a family of four kids caused her to take her eye off the ball and accumulate too much debt from lifestyle inflation and poor money management.

Now that they are more than 2 years into their financial recovery, she writes at Debt Debs for two reasons. First and foremost, to inspire others that recovering from masses of debt load is possible.

Secondly, she writes to maintain her motivation while managing a six-year long repayment plan. Debt fatigue can be very difficult, and generally, no more than three years is recommended.

But, with new-found frugalness and dedication, not only is she tackling spending and debt, but also is moving towards self management of their investment portfolios.

The blogging experience gives her incentive to tackle these challenges in a public forum. She still has four years before they are completely debt free including mortgages. This is a long road to travel but one that is necessary to reach their final destination of retirement at age 65 and 60.

When not working or blogging, Debs relishes time spent with her first grandson. She loves dogs and enjoys biking and a good laugh. She generally tries to live life in the moment these days, as long as it’s always a frugal moment!


Top recipe


homemade muesli bars

If you don’t already know I have a second Facebook page called The Free Recipe Depot where I share recipes from other Foodie Bloggers from around the world.

Once a week I pick one recipe that has been submitted as my Top Recipe of the week. Trust me when I say this is no easy task as some of these foodies can cook up a storm.

This week I picked these homemade muesli bars from The Hungarian Food Guide for those of you who enjoy making snacks at home and for those students on a budget.

You don’t have to pay premium prices to get convenience boxed snack bars at the grocery store when you can save money and make them at home. Here is a simple recipe that anyone can follow. Enjoy.


Editor’s Pick


Every week I will pick a blog post of the week from around the web that I found interesting and want to share with you and an Editor’s top blog post pick.

Editor’s blog post pick of the week

This week I read a post at Broke Girl Rich caught my eye. The topic was based around 20 ways that people go broke and although I’m sure we can all add to this list it was quite compelling and true.

I’m pretty sure at one point or another I’ve talked about many ways money is wasted but continuing to visit these ways is important to keep on track and away from losing everything you’ve got. I hope you’ll give it a read and share some other ways people end up with an empty bank account.


Weekly Features around the web


If you featured CBB and I missed you it’s because I haven’t been made aware but thank-you kindly for thinking of CBB.

We were fortunate this week to have CBB writer Katrina interviewed and featured on Yahoo Canada Finance in a blog post for those wanting to host a baby shower on a budget. I hope you enjoy the read and are as thrilled as Katrina and I both are to have Yahoo consider us.


Google search terms


Every week I get thousands of people visit Canadian Budget Binder because they did a search online and found my blog. Keep in mind any spelling errors below are because I share with you the exact way they typed their search engine query to land on my blog.

  • Canadian Twinkies Bigger– Are they? I guess you’ll just have to have two of your smaller Twinkies or make your own Twinkie style cakes like I did. I bet my Twinkie is bigger than yours! ha!
  • How much sour cream for 1000 perogies– Oh, I don’t know about a tonne! It all depends on how big your perogies are and what you want them to taste like… and likely other factors. Odd thing to search. How about you just make Nicola’s perogies.
  • I know a guy who steals groceries– I’m sure there are many people who steal food and if they get caught they WILL pay the consequences for their actions. Stealing is stealing even if you can’t afford to buy them.
  • Can’t afford baby Canada– We are about to learn just how much a baby will cost but there’s no denying having a child will cost money. Budgeting and planning your finances ahead of time is a great way to get ahead of the game.
  • Can you pay off your OSAP with a credit card?– I wouldn’t recommend that unless you are doing it to hook up with a boatload of rewards points. The interest on your credit card is likely more than what you are paying for your student loan. Paying with plastic won’t make the loan go away either, you still own it until you pay it in full. To be honest I doubt they would let you pay with a credit card but I’m not financial institution and the best way to find out is to call.

Thanks for joining me for this edition of The Saturday Weekend Review #85. Join me here again for more crazy stories from around the web and at home!


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