It is important to begin budgeting for college before you even get there. By creating a budget, you will have a clear sense of how much you can afford to spend on an education. Your budget will determine how much you will need to make up for in financial aid, scholarships, loans, etc. Use this college cost calculator to determine the total costs associated with your college education in order to create an accurate and realistic budget.
Aside from obvious costs associated with college such as tuition and housing, you will also need to account for standardized tests, test prep courses, college tours, application fees, etc. when applying and preparing for college. Although these one-time fees may seem insignificant, they will quickly add up especially when applying to multiple schools.
Creating a pre-college budget will put you on the path for a financially responsible college career.