Learn How To Finally Pay Off Those Loans From College
The days of paying for college in full, without some type of loan or Federal assistance are long gone. More students are graduating college with more debt than ever before. College costs have increased significantly and the consumer’s ability to pay has only changed slightly. As a result, more students owe money upon graduation.
When you’re starring at a mountain of debt, it’s very easy to feel helpless. The good news is that depending on the type of debt you have, there are flexible repayment options that can often meet your lifestyle. None-the-less, the responsibility for paying off the debt is yours and must be taken seriously. Otherwise, bad credit, liens, etc. could result impacting your future ability to borrow money.
Depending on how recently you graduated and type of loans you’ve taken out to pay for college, you may qualify for different loan repayment options. One of my personal favorites is student loan consolidation. The benefit here is that you aggregate all of your outstanding loans into a single loan with different payment terms. This may result in a lower interest rate and smaller monthly payment.
If you want to pay off your loan more quickly, reducing the amount you pay significantly over the life of the loan, then follow this tip. Each year, make one additional monthly payment and apply it directly towards the principle amount of the loan. By doing this, you lower the outstanding amount which reduces the significant amount of interest you pay over the initial 10 year loan period. Don’t underestimate the power of one additional payment on an annual basis.
The first thing you need to do is pick up the phone and have a conversation with your lender. If they penalize you for early payment then there’s no sense in submitting an extra payment each year. Doing so will only lower you disposable income. However, if there is no penalty for early repayment, ask what one extra payment each year – in the amount of your monthly payment – would do to the total amount owed. You will be pleasantly surprise of the positive impact this can have.
One thing to look out for is how the lender treats your extra payment. A common mistake is that individuals send in the extra payment without any directions for the lender. As a result, they think that you are just advancing next month’s payment. In order to take advantage of early repayment, you need to write on the check, “apply to principle”. If you don’t, they will simply put it towards the following month’s bill. This obviously defeats the purpose as the principle is what you are trying to address.
Make the extra payment method a habit. It might be difficult at first to save up that extra 50 bucks or so per month but it will pay tremendous dividends for you. To find out just how much you can save, speak to a representative at the bank. Know and understand how this method can work for you. Additionally, do your best to make saving a habit. By doing so, the burden of putting money aside becomes less difficult.
Paying off your college loans seems like an almost impossible task, but isn’t. Stay focused on making your monthly payments one at a time. Before you know it, you will be way into repayment and can explore other options like making an extra payment towards principle annually. This will save you money and help you eliminate your debt.