The Parthenon

Students learn to make more with their money

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Students, faculty and staff took time this week to understand more about how to make money multiply. Morrow Library featured SunTrust bank manager Todd Agosti as he led those interested through lessons in student loans, mortgages and budgeting.

Agosti asked those in attendance for his lesson on budgeting to describe the method to their madness. Excel spreadsheets, apps and old fashioned pencil and paper were some of the ways people applied the principle of budgeting to everyday life.

Senior graduate student Elizabeth Maltempie said she uses an Excel spreadsheet when she puts together a budget, but says it is sometimes not very practical. She said she tries to make a list of what she “needs” to buy and what she “wants” to buy.

“I forget to log everything and sometimes can’t easily access it when I’m out with my friends on the weekends to remember how much I can limit myself to in social situations,” Maltempie said.

Agosti said an Excel spreadsheet helps in terms of understanding where one might be overspending.

“It’s a snapshot of your budget,” Agosti said as he explained that an Excel spreadsheet may not capture your “true dollars” in the best way.

Financial well-being is the end goal when it comes to money and an exercise in financial well-being is the practice of budgeting. How many diets and exercises do we put ourselves through before finding what works for our personal health? Lots and sometimes it takes a combination of different practices to see what works best. Agosti said this much thought and attention should be put into our wealth.

Health and wealth are often achieved after many trial and error attempts. Agosti said the main thing to remember when looking at your budget is to pay yourself first.

“You have to pay yourself first with the end result in mind,” Agosti said as he explained the reason why we work is to be able to reward ourselves. The amount people are able to pay for themselves depends on the other factors that go into their respective budgets. Bills, car payments and food may be the other factors that determine just how much you can pay yourself during a certain pay period.

The final piece of advice Agosti left his audience with Tuesday afternoon was to practice what you preach.

“You can build it all day long but if you don’t follow it, it doesn’t matter,” Agosti said.

Budgeting materials and other resources from MoneySmart Week are available in the lobby of Drinko Library.

Elayna Conard can be contacted at [email protected]

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