Why Mark Cuban Thinks It Pays to 'Live Like a Student'

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  • Mark Cuban is a billionaire who probably doesn't have to worry about money.
  • In spite of that, he thinks consumers would be wise to adopt a frugal mindset.

It's a good rule to follow.

Shark Tank personality Mark Cuban has billions of dollars to his name -- but that wasn't always the case. Like many wealthy people, Cuban wasn't born into riches. Rather, he learned how to be a savvy investor and grew his own wealth over time.

As such, Cuban understands what it means to have to live on a budget. And he also knows that growing wealth often means making sacrifices.

To that end, he has one great piece of advice for everyday consumers. And it's a rule worth living by.

Live like a student

Many people spend their college days cash-strapped and stressed about money. And college students commonly have to resort to frugal decisions, like eating instant noodles for dinner, to conserve funds.

Cuban says one piece of financial advice he likes to give is to live like a student -- even if you're not a student. What he means by that is consumers should make a conscious choice to avoid overspending and buying things they can't afford. They should also use discretion when making purchases and avoid spending money on things they can live without.

Cuban is well aware that it takes money to make money. And so those looking to build wealth need to start by building some savings. From there, they can invest money they're not using immediately and grow it into a larger sum over time.

What living like a student might look like for you

When Cuban suggests living like a student, he's not necessarily saying you should sell your home, find a roommate, and live in an apartment that's the equivalent of a cramped dorm room. And you don't even have to resign yourself to eating a bowl of high sodium instant noodles every night either. Rather, the point is to be mindful of your spending and avoid throwing money away on things that aren't all that meaningful to you.

There are different ways you can incorporate Cuban's advice into your own life. You could, for example, stop wasting money on fancier electronics when your current phone, laptop, and tablet all work just fine. Or, you could stop spending money on clothing when you have a robust wardrobe that gives you plenty of variety.

Living like a student could also mean renting a studio apartment if a one-bedroom costs $300 more a month and you're not sharing your space with anyone. Giving up some square footage could mean banking $3,600 a year, or investing that money and growing it into a larger sum.

If you're willing to live more frugally even for a couple of years, it could work wonders for your finances. You might get the opportunity to pad your savings, sock money away for a big goal, like buying a house, or pay off whatever debt you've racked up to date. And while living like a student doesn't sound like an easy thing to do offhand, if you're willing to make some sacrifices for at least a limited period of time, you could end up setting yourself on a financially secure path.

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