With the New Year approaching, you’re probably thinking about making good on your dreams of becoming a professional dog groomer. But you know as much as everyone that keeping New Year’s resolutions is easier said than done!

Are you thinking about enrolling in that dog grooming course you’ve been eyeing since November? We’d suggest getting all the different components in place so that you can make the beginning of your career transition as smooth as possible! The biggest hurdle you’re going to encounter is paying for your course—education isn’t cheap! How can you make sure that you’re able to keep up with your program if you can’t finance your studies?!

Worry not—there are more than a couple of ways to minimize the effect your bank account will have on your studies. Read on to find out what they are!

Don’t quit your job!

You’ve seen the protagonist of a rom-com just up and quit their job in a spur-of-the-moment decision. They go through a turbulent period of doubt/failure and then an amazing opportunity magically falls onto their lap. It’s completely possible for you to play with Lady Luck and come out on top, but when your life isn’t run by cinematic tropes, it can be a difficult path to take!

If you don’t already have savings to pour into your course, it would be an absolutely terrible idea to quit your only source of income. After all, you still have to pay your bills and buy groceries – even if you managed to afford tuition upfront!

Keeping a full-time or part-time job is possible if you find a program that accommodates your lifestyle. Enrolling in a part-time program or a self-paced program is probably your best bet. This way, you’re able to keep up with your professional, personal, and social commitments while making strides towards your future career.

Scholarships and promotions

Brick-and-mortar colleges, private institutions, and online schools all offer different ways of helping aspiring groomers get their training as best they can. Usually this type of aid is provided through scholarships (common in community colleges), tuition offers and promotions, or even full-tuition payment discounts to help cut or cover costs.

Do your research! If you were thinking about taking your studies online, you’ll probably find tuition to be cheaper since your money won’t be paying into campus maintenance costs and the like. Moreover, online courses often have promotions and offers to entice students to move online with their studies. If you do adequate research, there are many programs and courses out there that teach high-quality content to give you the ultimate bang for your buck.

Payment plans

Community college programs don’t often allow you flexibility when it comes to tuition payments—you’re expected to pay for your tuition upfront before or during the first few weeks of school. There are, however, specialized dog grooming schools that offer more competitively priced programs with multiple payment options.

A flexible and customizable payment plan should be your go-to. You won’t have to scramble to make ends meet after paying thousands upfront, and you can work to budget your paycheck so that you’re covered if unexpected expenses arise.

Usually, there would be about 2-3 different payment plans on top of paying in full. An accelerated option would entail paying a fraction of the full tuition fee in a few installments. The extended option would entail paying an even smaller tuition installment each time, but the number of installments would increase until the full tuition costs are covered. Whichever one you choose will depend on your financial situation and personal preference—some people find it less stressful if they can pay off their tuition fees as soon as they can!

Researching affordable dog grooming schools

…and if the course isn’t for you?

You need to remember that just because you enrolled in a course and paid for it, that you’re not stuck with it if it turns out that the course wasn’t what you were expecting.

When you first get your hands on the course guide and materials, review them to determine if the course suits your needs and interests. If the course isn’t a good fit for you, and your school puts students’ needs first, you’ll be able to withdraw and receive some (if not all) of your money back. It’s important to keep track of when the deadline is to withdraw from a course or program—if you withdraw afterwards, you may not be able to get any money back at all! Ultimately it’s your responsibility to keep track of your finances, so you should be keeping an eye on these dates.

That being said, don’t just give up on your dreams because the first course you tried isn’t for you! For every less-than-stellar school out there, there exists an amazing grooming school that provides you with all the financial support you need. It’s easy to want to throw the towel in after a bad experience, but if this is really something that you see yourself doing, don’t let a minor setback deter you!

There’s more to a good program than affordability! Find out what else you should be looking for in a dog grooming course!

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