Are you living on the breadline? Over the weekend I was scrolling Facebook (number 1 favourite hobby) & came across a post from a student nurse on how they were struggling & barely making ends meet. They wrote about how they had to eat their kid’s leftovers & leave bills go unpaid because they simply had no money.
No Money Sucks.
The comments from others showed just how many were in the exact same boat and desperate. I remembered all too clearly that feeling & the little “tricks” I used, just to get by. Like using pay @ pump to fill my car knowing that I only had £1.89 in my bank account. But as the transaction would take a couple of days to go through, I could still get the fuel I needed before payday. Which, by the way, I don’t recommend as you eventually get charged by the bank for insufficient funds, so it ends up costing you more money. But like I said…desperate.
Having No Money Makes Everything More Stressful.
Not being able to cover your bills & worrying how you’re going to get through the month is hard enough. Let alone trying to revise for an exam or get through another 12 hour shift on a busy ward! Everyone knows that training to be a nurse is tough, but when you throw financial worries into the mix it’s like adding petrol to a burning bonfire! Even those who are lucky to have good financial support & savings still find there are numerous times when they struggle. Unexpected bills seem to crop up all the time as a student nurse.
Don’t Be Ashamed Or Afraid To Ask For Help.
No matter what your circumstances are I guarantee you are not the only one who has been in this situation, the important thing is to reach out for help. Speak to your personal tutor at uni & see if there are additional hardship grants, or funding you could apply for that you may not have known about. If you feel you can’t approach your personal tutor, go to student services & also ask your friends on your course how they manage with money. They might be able to advise you on extra financial support available and how to apply for it.
The thing is if you don’t ask you’ll never know!
This also applies outside of uni; speak to family members to see if they can help you, even if it’s just keeping your kitchen stocked up with food. Contact your local council to see if they can help with reducing your council tax or help with housing costs. Speak to your gas/electric/water provider to see if you’re entitled to any discounts & if you’re behind on the bills they may even write them off.
10 More Ways To Get Money Fast:
- Most student nurses make money by working shifts as a Health Care Support Worker for their local trust on the nurse bank. There is usually a fast track job application process once you start at university and some trusts pay wages weekly so you can get it sooner. As you can pick which shifts you can work to fit around uni & placement, it’s a flexible way of making additional income. However, be cautious if you receive benefits & with student finance/bursary payments, as they are calculated on your income you could end up worse off by working & even having to pay money back!
- Are you entitled to benefits? Although you may think you’re not, or you are already getting everything you’re entitled to, it’s always worth checking. Entitledto and Betteroffcalculator are free sites which can check for you. You can even adjust your circumstances, like if you were to move or take on part time work, to see how these changes may affect the amount you receive.
- Sell on Facebook marketplace, & in local buy & sell Facebook groups, or on Gumtree & Ebay. Popular items to sell include toys, baby items, furniture, electricals, clothing, shoes/boots, & sports equipment. Spend an afternoon clearing your house of everything you don’t use/need anymore & you’ll be surprised how much cash that can quickly add up to!
- Sell things you make/bake/create online & at local craft fairs. If you already have a hobby making jewellery or designing handmade cards or baking cupcakes, you can turn that into cash selling online via Facebook & Instagram & other sites like Ebay & Etsy. This can be an easier & more profitable way to make money around university & placement hours.
- Don’t fancy a side hustle? You could write & sell a one off story to newspapers & magazines for about £100. Join the FeatureMe! Facebook group to find requests for stories from publications, on a range of subjects from going on a nightmare holiday to meeting the prime minister! You can also check out Take a Break & Real People who also pay well.
- Think you haven’t got anything worthwhile to sell? Rummage around for old phones & books lurking in backs of cupboards. Even old iPhones that may not work anymore can be recycled & earn around £100 – £50, check Sell My Mobile & CeX for the best prices. Amazon Marketplace is one of the best sites to sell books & some that are older might be hard to find & could end up fetching quite a bit.
- Do you have a driveway & live near a train station, airport, football ground, or city centre? You could make money renting it out for people commuting to use as a car parking space during the day & earn up to £200 a month. Check out JustPark, Parklet, YourParkingSpace, ParkOnMyDrive, & Gumtree.
- Check if you can claim for a delayed or cancelled flight. Even if it was going back up to 6 years ago, if the flight was over 3 hours late, you may still be able to claim up to £510. Use the free tool at moneysavingexpert to check if you’re eligible and how to claim.
- Go through your budget & bank account to check for any old direct debits that you may still be paying & don’t need to. Look out for things like old gym memberships that you aren’t using & subscriptions to apps that you don’t really need, or paying for mobile phone insurance when you already get it as a bank account benefit. Scrutinise your budget and shop around for better deals on utilities. It’s easy to switch and there’s lots of comparison websites like uswitch to find you a better deal which could save you £100’s every year.
- Switch your bank account & get up to £175. Again shop around to find the best deal for you as most require a minimum monthly pay in, check comparethemarket, moneysupermarket, and gocompare to see what each account offers. Don’t forget to find out what benefits a student account can offer as many have free overdrafts & railcards which can also save you £100’s if you use them.