Calculating Living Expenses
Students often ask us how we calculate the "living expense allowance" segment of the estimated cost of attendance for an academic year. There are several answers to the question, depending on the student's dependency status, permanent address, and housing plans for the academic year. The following are variations of the question and the corresponding answers:
Frequently Asked Questions
- What does a living allowance include?
- What is the living allowance for a local student who will live at home with his/her parents?
- What is the living allowance for a student who will reside on campus?
- What is the living allowance for students who will live in an apartment?
- If I am a local student but would like to live on campus during the academic year, can I get enough financial aid to cover the cost of a dorm room and a meal card?
- The average cost of double room in a dormitory and a meal plan for on campus residents; or
- The average cost of rent and food for someone living in an apartment; or
- An allowance for local students who are living in their parent's home. This allowance includes the cost of one meal per weekday on campus,
Transportation and personal/ miscelaneous expenses are treated separately in the budget. For the 2011-2012 academic year, the "cost of attendance" budget includes a $1,200 allowance for books and supplies (full-time undergraduate students) and a $1,839 "miscellaneous expense" allowance. The transportation allowance is based on the student's permanent home address.
- Saving Money on Textbook Costs - check these resources to see if you can minimize the amount you need to spend of books
Q. What is the living allowance for a local student who will live at home with his/her parents?
A. The living allowance for a local student who will live at home with his/her parents includes $2,962 per academic year to cover cost of being maintained at home plus the cost of one meal on campus per weekday.
Upperclass students (Junior standing and above) living on campus must carry at least a $500 Wolfbucks Only plan, and may choose any higher plan at their option.
Off-Campus students may carry any meal plan, or Wolfbucks in increments of $100
For the 2012-2013 academic year, the projected costs for the 15 meals per week plan (which includes $400 in "Wolfbucks") is projected to be $2,246 per semester.This is the allowance we use in calculating your eligibility for "need-based" financial aid. Other plans run from $955 to $2,358 per semester.
For the 2013-2014 academic year, the projected annual cost for a double room in Biever or Buddig Hall is or $3,595 per semester. This is the allowance we use in calculating your eligibility for "need-based" financial aid. Other housing options run from $2,913 to $4,437 per semester.
Q. If I am a local student but would like to live on campus during the academic year, can I get enough financial aid to cover the cost of a dorm room and a meal card?
A. Local (greater New Orleans area) students are always processed with a budget of expenses that reflects living at home with parents. If you wish to be considered for additional aid to reside on campus, you must make a request in writing to the Financial Aid Office. We will increase your living expense budget, but you should note that it is university policy that this additional expense can be covered only by Federal Direct Student Loans, PLUS, or alternative loan funds.
- Students can find additional resources to help them learn about organizing their finances in Money Management for Undergraduates
Updated February 4, 2013