Student Loans: Tips For Students And Parents


The higher cost of getting a good education can make going to school very expensive. Schools of all types cost great amounts of money. What should you do if you do not have the money needed to attend school? That is the purpose behind student loans. The excellent advice will help you understand how to go about getting one.

TIP! Do know that you are probably going to have a post-graduation grace period from your student loans before you are required to start making payments back. This is generally the period after graduation when the payments are due.

Be sure you know all details of all loans. You need to watch what your balance is, who the lender you’re using is, and what the repayment status currently is with loans. All these details are involved in both repayment options as well as forgiveness potentials. It will help you budget accordingly.

Remember private financing. Student loans through the government are available, but there is a lot of competition. Private loans are available, though perhaps not in the volume of federal ones. A private student loan from a community source may be just what you need to buy textbooks or manage some other specific expense.

TIP! Always know all of the key details of any loan you have. You need to stay on top of your balances, your lenders and the repayment status in which you find yourself at any given time.

If you are in the position to pay off student loans early and inclined to do so, make sure you begin with the loans that carry the highest rate of interest. This will reduce the total amount of money that you must pay.

Pay attention to how long the grace period is after your graduation before you student loan has to be repaid. Stafford loans typically give you six months. Others, like the Perkins Loan, allot you nine months. Other student loans’ grace periods vary. Make sure that you are positive about when you will need to start paying and be on time.

TIP! Don’t discount using private financing to help pay for college. There are lots of student loans available, and there is also a lot of demand and a lot of competition.

Look to pay off loans based on their scheduled interest rate. The highest rate loan should be paid first. Using any extra cash available can help pay off student loans faster. Remember, there are no penalties for paying off your loan early.

Your principal will shrink faster if you are paying the highest interest rate loans first. You will reduce the amount of interest that you owe. Focus on paying off big loans first. After you’ve paid your largest loan off in full, take the money that was previously needed for that payment and use it to pay off other loans that are next in line. If you make at least the minimum payment on all loans and large payments on the biggest loan, your student loan balances will disappear.

TIP! You don’t need to panic if a problem arises during repayment of your loans. Life problems such as unemployment and health complications are bound to happen.

The thought of paying on student loans can be daunting. There are loan rewards opportunities that can help. For instance, look into SmarterBucks and LoanLink, products of Upromise. Similar to popular cash-back programs, each dollar spent accrues rewards that are applied against your loan balance.

Lots of folks secure student loans without truly understanding the fine print. Ask to get clarification on anything you don’t understand. Lenders sometimes prey on borrowers who don’t know what they are doing.

Perkins Loan

Two of the most popular school loans are the Perkins loan and the often mentioned Stafford loan. Many students decide to go with one or both of them. They are a great deal because you will get the government to pay your interest during your education. The interest rate on a Perkins loan is 5 percent. The interest rate on Stafford loans that are subsidized are generally no higher than 6.8 percent.

TIP! If you have the ability to pay more than what you owe on your loans, try to get those with the highest interest taken care of first. Calculating the terms properly will prevent spending more money than is necessary by the end of the loan.

PLUS student loans are offered to parents and graduate students. They cap their interest rate at 8.5 percent. These rates are higher, but they are better than private loan rates. This is the best option for mature students.

Your school may want you to borrow from certain lenders. For example, there are schools that allow the use of their name by select private lenders. This can be very misleading. The school may get some kind of a payment if you go to a lender they are sponsored by. It is important that you understand the entire loan contract before agreeing to it.

TIP! Pick a payment plan that suits your particular needs. Most lenders allow ten years to pay back your student loan in full.

Banish the notion that defaulting on your student loans means freedom from debt. The government has a lot of ways it can try to get its money back. For instance, it can claim portions of Social Security or tax return payments. The government even has the right to take up to fifteen percent of what it deems your disposable income. Many times you will put yourself in an even worse situation.

To stretch your student loan money as far as it will go, purchase a meal plan by the meal instead of the dollar amount. This will eliminate price gouging for extra dining money since it’s just a flat fee for every meal.

TIP! Paying off your biggest loans as soon as you can is a sound strategy towards minimizing your overall principal. The less principal that is owed, the less you’ll have to pay in interest.

Always stay connected to your lenders. It is crucial that they keep in contact with you in case any loan repayment changes take place, and you are not caught off-guard by any new payments. They may give you some wise advice for repaying the loans.

If possible, maintain a job while you are attending school. You will be able to offset expenses and get more money to keep.

TIP! Take more credit hours to make the most of your loans. While 9 to 12 hours each semester is full time, you may be able to get 15 to 18 which can help you to graduate faster.

Take a deep breath when you seriously contemplate the depth of your student loan balance. This might feel like it’s a huge amount when checking it out, but you have to pay it over time so it’s really not that bad. Stay on top of your payments and your loan will disappear in no time.

Now that you’re done with this article, you can see that getting a loan for your education is easier than you thought. You should now have the confidence needed to start pursuing your education. Use the tips wisely when you go fill out those student loan forms when applying for school.