Managing food and money when living off campus
Living off campus is a huge challenge when it comes to spending money on food. The least expensive option is also the most time-consuming: cooking for yourself.
Cooking for yourself involves grocery shopping, prep time, cooking time, and, if you’re good about saving money, research time to figure out where the deals are. And as a college student, the time you spend on these things is time that could be used for studying.
The alternative, of course, is to simply eat out most of the time.
The downside to this option is that while it is time efficient, the amount of money it costs compared to cooking for yourself is ridiculous. (Note: The IU MoneySmarts Team does a great presentation on the difference in costs). Eating out all the time will cause you to go into deep debt. So what do you do?
Obviously, the goal here should be to spend as little money as possible, but still keep your satisfaction level high.