How Applying for a Student Loan Feels Different These Days

Mini graduation cap on rolled up cash.

Parents and students will agree that there’s an increased sense of uncertainty today when it comes to pursuing higher education plans. With life practically upended as we know it, many things are left high up in the air and have yet to fall back down into their proper place.
Even those who have set aside college funds for their children might now be dealing with unemployment, and so now must seriously look into available higher education loan opportunities.

Regardless of the dire changes in the world’s situation today, what hasn’t changed is the importance of investing in education. This is why many will most likely still pursue it. Although, they might have to delay it for a time until things settle down a bit. Different kinds of financial aid, from scholarships to loans, can be sought out to help students increase their chances of securing funds to secure their educational future.

It will require patience and a keen understanding of how these options work, though. After all, taking out a loan for school is one of the first, and biggest, loans you’ll ever take out for yourself. As a matter of fact, the only other type of debt that comes close to the average person is the housing loan.

As with any other types of loans, there’s going to be a stringent application process you’ll need to get through first before approval. To apply for a student loan, forms will need to be filled up, and requirements will need to be sent. In other words, there’s a lot of information gathering and data collecting that will occur.

Student Loans Then and Now

Before diving into those specifics, let’s first take a look at what you can expect in today’s student loan landscape. Perhaps the first thing you need to know about student loans is that you’re not the only one interested in applying for it. As a matter of fact, there are over $1.64 trillion worth of student loan debt in 2019, $1.515 trillion of which come in the form of federal loans, while the other $124.65 billion comes from private funding, according to the December 2019 data from the Department of Education.

These numbers are staggering. And give you an idea of just how much clamor there is for it in the country. And these numbers keep growing every year.

student loan debt statisticWe were still only dealing with billions back then, and now it’s in trillions. It only took a full decade to double that amount in billions to trillions today! Can you imagine how much more it’s going to be in the next decade?

The Rise in Student Loans

As more people seek out higher education, whether in college or post-graduate studies, the more that student loan opportunities—and rates—go higher. There are a variety of reasons for this.

One is that the cost of schooling itself increases every year. Colleges and universities may justify these tuition fee increases with improvements in faculty, facilities, and curriculum. Of course, they would want to reassure you that you’ll be getting your money’s worth if you do decide to come to their institution.

student loan quote

Another thing you should know before you apply for a student loan is that you can expect an average of $35,397 student loans per person. So if you’re planning to take out a loan, it would be great if you could also have a reasonable expectation of where you’re going to get funding to repay the loan. After all, student loans aren’t simply offered on principal amount; there are interests and possibly other add-on rates that may be attached to it.

Simply put, it’s definitely a long-term commitment that you would do very well to prepare well for and take seriously.

Understandably, the idea of taking out a student loan today, especially in this very uncertain economic climate, is nerve-wracking. However, from then and now, student loans have proven to be a reliable option to help you pursue your life goals by way of completing your education.

Taking out student loans is a serious responsibility, yes. But with proper management, it is possible to prevent it from overwhelming your life or drowning you in debt for many years to come.

Here are some of the first steps and considerations you need to take if you are planning to apply for a student loan.

Set A Budget

How can you set a budget when you don’t know how much loan amount will be offered to you? The answer is simple: list down your options for colleges and universities and sees how much they cost. Doing this should give you an idea of the range of costs you should aim for when you take out a loan.

The cost of tuition will depend on how prestigious and exclusive the institution is. Ivy league schools are definitely going to require a lot more in terms of finances. Smaller private institutions, like art universities, also tend to be in the higher range of tuition costs because of the perception of exclusivity attached to it.

Other more “regular” colleges and universities may cost a little less. But don’t take it to mean that it’s going to be so much more affordable. Whichever option you take, it’s still going to cost a serious amount of money. You’re talking about funding for your entire four years (at the minimum!) of your degree, after all.

This is also why it’s crucial for you to think very hard about what course you’re pursuing before you apply for a student loan. Is this something that you could build and grow into as a serious career, or is this something more of an interest elevated to a higher level? How marketable are the skills that you can have in this degree you want to earn? What is the job market like upon your graduation? Does your area of study allow you to pivot to a different career path seamlessly in case you need to?

Make a Good Plan

We know, it’s definitely a lot to think about. But you have, because remember, once you take out the loan, it’s your responsibility to pay it back. Therefore, whatever it is that you’re using it for, you should at least try and make sure that your next steps in the future, upon graduation, are going to be helpful to you in bearing this responsibility.

As you’ve seen in today’s world, there is no guarantee for success, that much is true. But also, preparation really is key to make your future just a little bit more secured. So you don’t let financial obligations like student loans take over your life. At the very least, you can try.

It is highly advisable that in your search for the best-suited loan offer for your needs, you prepare the basic document requirements as well. You might also want to make duplicates of these documents, especially if you intend to make multiple applications.

Approaching Student Loans

Student loans can be terribly intimidating, we know that as much. The sheer amount of money involved in the conversation is enough to send a first-time student loaner tossing and turning at night.

When taking steps to apply for student loans, regardless if it’s your first time or not, it’s always good to take a comprehensive look at what awaits you in the deal. Know what are the moving parts in taking out a student loan.

requirements for a student loan

As a tip, don’t be lured in by easy promises of huge money to fund your education. Always read the fine print and make sure you’ve studied the terms and conditions before signing on the dotted line. If the process seems too easy and too good to be true, then that’s probably because it is.

That’s why you should really take the time to study your options and compare the different offers out there. If there’s one major change you can be grateful for a decade ago, it’s that information and fact-checking is a lot easier now, thanks to the internet. Put in the work for research so you can come up with a well-informed decision. Your future literally depends on it.

Types of Loans

types of student loans

What you have to remember about federal loans, however, is that the school will be the one to determine how much you should get. That, plus the fact that there is a cap on how much you can loan. Whether you get subsidized or unsubsidized loans.

types of student loans

They will do a hard check on your credit history to verify your eligibility. And again might need to require a co-signer. You must clearly identify who the primary lender will be. In this case: is it going to be or your parents?

Private loans also do offer a variety of options for loan repayment. Do you think you can manage a monthly schedule? Which will start running as soon as the funds are released to your account. Or would you rather defer the payments until after you’ve graduated? Each choice will have its pros and cons so make sure to think about it hard.

When you apply for private loans, you’ll also be the one to identify first how much you think you’ll need. You can justify your application by saying it’s for student loan housing on top of tuition and other additional costs. The lender will determine if your justification is good enough. And most importantly, if your credit standing is good enough to give the amount you asked for. Be prepared to be offered a different amount, and one that’s less than what you’re hoping to get.

When you apply for a student loan, the most important thing you have to watch out for in private loans is the interest rates. They tend to give out the highest interest rates among the different types of loans you can avail of in this list.

Final Thoughts

Ultimately, however, while there may have been many changes in the landscape of student loans in the past decade, what remains is the fact that it is a crucial part of pursuing your dreams.

True, there are many reasons to be scared and unsure in these times. But there are also plenty of helpful resources you can use to help you feel in better control of your future. Before you apply for a student loan, study your personal loan options. Take a deep look at the considerations, and base your decision on established data and factual information. Then you’ll find taking out a student loan today does not need to be as scary as you think it is.

A Syllabus For The Cost for College Students in America

Yale University, New Haven

Student loan debt has been a major point of discussion for some time now. It really is not surprising, though. The national student debt adds up to more than $1.64 trillion. Yikes! That is a lot of debt, and it comes from 44.7 million Americans.

So, keep reading to find out how you can save money on your college journey and what is important to know before you decide to take a student loan or before any kind of borrowing money for college.

Make Your Perfect College Plan Considering These Common Costs for Students

If you or a loved one are preparing for college, numbers about national student debt probably scare you a bit. That’s understandable- debt is a scary thing. I get a little queasy every time I think about my own student debt. There are so many things that I wish I would have known before getting into that debt. I had no clue what I was getting into at the time, or how I could have changed it.

That is no longer the case, though. I have learned from my mistakes when it comes to debt and college costs, and I want to share those lessons with you. We are going to make our way through the most common costs for college students and talk about how to minimize them.

Tuition

It does not matter what school you go to, what degree program you enter, or where you live while you are in school- tuition will always be the biggest cost for college students. Tuition covers the cost of actually taking the courses. It is usually charged per credit hour and can vary wildly.

The cost for college students to receive a four-year degree can be anywhere from $20,000 to hundreds of thousands. As of 2019, the average in-state public college degree averaged about $26,500 while a private college education averaged about $53,000, which is actually considered to be a “moderate” cost for college students at private schools. That, my friends, is not moderate by any stretch of my imagination.

The short and simple truth to it is the tuition cost for college students depends largely on the school they attend and the degree program they enter. I do not want to push anyone away from attending a school they really want to go to, but when you are trying to cut the tuition cost for college students, you should consider the following:

Is there a reason that you want to attend this school specifically? If a high priced college has offered you a scholarship or something else, by all means, go for it. If you have been promised a well-paying job if you graduate from that college, go ahead. However, if there is no set reason you want to go there, ask yourself if you could consider a lower-cost option.

Higher College Cost doesn’t Mean You Will Get a Better Paying Job

Could you achieve the same career by earning a certification in that field as opposed to a full four-year degree? Even after earning a Master’s Degree, I still find myself getting more use out of a certification course that took me three months to complete.

Does that school have better results than others? I am not talking about test scores or anything like that. I am referring to the results after the students graduate. Does a high percentage of graduates get really good jobs after graduation? Is that percentage higher than in other schools?

Unless you are getting grants and scholarships to cover the entire cost, you will be in debt when you leave college. Well, also unless your family has money and can afford the cost out of pocket. Otherwise, you are probably going to owe some student debt. The amount of debt depends on a lot of factors, but the point is this: If you attend a really expensive college, are you going to be able to get a good enough job to cover those high student loan payments and still live comfortably? Think about it. While everyone believes that doctors have tons of money, it actually takes them a while to work off their medical school debt. That does not mean that you should not go to medical school, but it is something to consider carefully.

The point that I am trying to make here is that the higher cost colleges do not necessarily equal the highest paying jobs or the biggest bank accounts. If you- or your loved one- want to attend a school with a high tuition cost for college students, just examine the reasoning behind it and make sure it is sound. Otherwise, you may end up in unnecessary debt.

School Fees

In addition to tuition, most colleges charge school fees. These can literally be for anything, depending on the college. Some fees are charged to cover the use of the library, gyms, or other areas that need to be maintained. There may be technology fees to cover the use of computer labs, health fees for visits to the college’s health center, or anything else the college offers.

Fees are a way of spreading the cost of upkeep and maintenance among everyone. They are not really a bad thing as they go to benefit all students, but they are something to keep in mind when considering the overall cost for college students.

Statistic: Average annual cost to attend university in the United States, by institution type 2013-2020 (in U.S. dollars) | Statista

Room and Board

Room and board are another area that can vary wildly. The average room and board cost for college students attending private schools averaged almost $13,000 last year. Public schools were not far behind, coming in at about $11,500.

Some students opt to live off campus. This does not necessarily guarantee a lower cost, but it does give you a little more control. It allows you to find a place within a budget you can work with. You might also choose to live with some roommates to lower your cost. If you live off campus, though, you must also consider that you will be providing more of your own food, so that is a cost you will need to calculate yourself.

Some other students decide to go to college near home and continue to live with their parents for a time. This is definitely a way to save money overall, but it is not an option for all students. If you have this choice, talk it out with your parents and decide together if staying at home for a while is the best move for everyone.

Books and Supplies

Sometimes, the quoted tuition price includes an estimate of the cost for college students to purchase their textbooks. This estimate is just that- an estimate. The textbooks may costs more or less than that as the ones you need will depend on your classes. The average cost of books and supplies for the 2019-2020 school year was more than $1,200.

Even if that estimate is accurate, it does not include the various other supplies you will need. You still have to consider the cost for items such as:

  • Notebook paper
  • Pens and pencils
  • Highlighters
  • Notebooks and binders
  • Study guides
  • Calculators

And pretty much all of the other items you need for studying and completing your classwork.

Equipment

Let’s not forget the other items you will need to help in your day to day life. You will likely need things like:

  • A laptop/tablet and printer, flash drives, and similar items
  • Microwave/hotplate for your dorm or home
  • Cooking items, like pots, pans, and utensils
  • Sheets, towels, and blankets
  • A vacuum
  • Lamps
  • Any specialty items for classes (like a camera if you are a photography student)

If you are living in your own home off campus, you will need even more, like a bed, furniture, and appliances. You might be able to find a place that is furnished, but if not, do not forget items for your home.

Transportation

The transportation cost for college students varies according to how much they will be traveling. For those living off campus, the cost will include fuel for your car, insurance, and more. If you are attending college away from your family, you will need to calculate the costs of traveling home on your breaks.

Personal Expenses

The tuition cost for college students does not include any personal expenses. Groceries, toiletries, medications, streaming services- like Netflix- clothes and laundry, entertainment, and anything else you choose to purchase is in addition to tuition and fees.

Tips for Cutting Costs and Limiting Your Debt

Here are a few other “tricks” to help you cut your costs:

Shop Student Loans

I hope from the bottom of my heart that you can get enough aid to cover your full costs and not have to take out any student loans. I know what it is like to be in that debt and I would not wish it on anyone.Questions Before you get a student loan

Regardless of my hopes, though, you may find yourself in need of them, so I want to give you some very important advice here: Do not just accept the first loan you are offered. You should actually do some student loan shopping.

Not all student loans are created equal. The interest rates vary. Some charge interest while you are in school and others wait until you graduate to start calculating interest. Student loans can be as different as any other financial product. Do your due diligence and compare different student loans. Remember, this is a debt you will be dealing with for a while. The better loan terms you can get, the better off you will be.

And here is another thing: You do not have to stick with loans categorized as “student loans”. Student loans are widely accepted as a way to pay for college, but it is not the only way. You might find that you can get a personal loan to cover some of your school costs and that personal loans might have a much lower interest rate and better repayment terms than any student loan you can find.

The point I hope I am getting across is that you do not have to be stuck inside a box just because “that’s the way it is”. Be open-minded when it comes to covering your college tuition.

Getting a student loan from a credible lender is extremely important. You don’t want to get scammed. Loanry is here to help you make sure you’re on the right path.

Purchase Items Elsewhere

There is a pretty good chance that shopping on or near your campus for supplies and personal items is going to cost you more than in other areas. Have you ever noticed on vacation that sunscreen, deodorant, or other necessities cost about twice as much as they do at your local store? This is not an accident.

Retailers in vacation spots know that tourists will probably need those items, and take advantage of the fact that they will have to purchase from that store. What are they going to do? Run home and pick theirs up? No, they are going to buy what’s available, even if the price is sky-high.

Many college areas are like this, too. The retailers know that students need the items that they sell and that they probably will not travel to a different location to get them. Therefore, they can charge a higher price. This is not the case in every college town, but it does happen in many of them.

The best way to combat this is to purchase your items elsewhere. Take as much as you can with you from home. Every time you go home on break, stock up on what you can. Ask your parents to purchase what they can when the back to school sales are over. Also, shop online. You are bound to find your items much cheaper there.

Skip the Campus Bookstore

You do not have to purchase your textbooks at the campus bookstore. In fact, purchasing your items at the campus bookstore is a huge cost for college students- and an unnecessary one, at that.

Forego the bookstore and buy used textbooks online. Textbook Rush, Knetbooks, Thriftbooks, and Amazon are all excellent websites to get low-cost textbooks on. You can even rent any of the available books or choose to read the digital copy for much less than anything you could buy at the campus bookstore.

Use Delivery

Minimize your transportation costs by taking advantage of delivery. We all know that you can purchase just about anything on Amazon. At the time of this writing, Amazon is offering six months of Amazon Prime for free to students. After that six months, it is only $6.99 per month. That $7 could save you a ton of gas.

Learn to Cook

Eating pizza and fast food all of the time is going to cost you a pretty penny. Save some dough by learning to cook just a few meals. Even if you live in a dorm, you can have a hot plate to help you cook. You do not have to become Gordon Ramsay- just learn to cook enough to keep your food costs low.

Online Courses

As a person who has attended college both online and on-campus, I can attest to the convenience of online courses. If you have the option to take any of your classes online, you should consider it. It often costs much less to attend online courses.

Be careful of the classes you take online, though, as you are not getting all of the benefits- like asking your professor for help. Yes, you can do that with online courses, but it takes time to get a response. If the class is on a subject you normally do well in, you will probably be fine taking an online course. If you struggle with a subject, for instance, math, you should probably attend the live classes.

Talk to the Financial Office

Before you choose a college- before you turn down an expensive school or choose a lower-cost school due- talk to the financial office at the school. Sometimes, those higher-priced schools have more scholarships and grants they can give out than other schools. Some kids have gotten enough assistance from their schools that they end up only paying the tuition of a lower-priced school.

They say, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” Well, you also should not judge a college by the “sticker price”. You should be more concerned with what is referred to as the “net price”. This is the amount of tuition you are left to cover after any grants and scholarships are applied. It does not matter if a college costs $10,000 per year unless you are stuck covering that entire amount.

If, however, your scholarships and grants cover $8,000 of that each year, you only have to worry about $2,000 of the tuition. That amount may be lower than what you would have to cover at your local community college. So before you make any decisions, determine the net price of that school.

Conclusion

You have many options to pay for your college. Except scholarships, there are also and student loans, credit cards for students, etc. Take control of your college costs and your financial future by cutting down where you can and making wise decisions. Doing so can help you avoid or minimize your student loan debt.

Your Educational Guide On How to Pay for College

Hat graduation model on banknote saving for concept finance education and scholarships

So you’re thinking about going to school – or going BACK to school – or helping someone you love to go to school. Whether it’s you, your partner, or one of your kids, it’s always exciting to think about the possibilities of post-secondary education. Sometimes that means living on campus and taking on the full “college experience.” Other times, and increasingly common these days, it might mean needing a good laptop and reliable Wi-Fi because you’ll rarely actually see your professors or the people in your class. Sometimes it’s a mix of the two.

Whatever the case, it’s very possible that it’s your job to be excited and supportive, or – if the student is YOU – to be committed and hard-working. Maybe you’re trying not to sound worried, or focused on the “wrong things,” but chances are somewhere in all of the positive energy is a rather daunting issue.

Quote about education

You’re going to need to figure out how to pay for college.

Get the Money For Your Education: Student Debt Hacks

A decade or two ago, the answer would have seemed simple. How to pay for college? Student loans! Take out as much as you can from as many places as possible. And defer repayment for as many years as you can get away with! By the time you have to make your first payment. You’ll have a great career and tons of money and you won’t even miss that monthly installment!

Awesome, right?

Unfortunately, it didn’t always work out quite that way. It turns out college kept getting more expensive. And graduates often didn’t end up in the careers they expected making the kind of money they’d planned. Those loans kept coming due anyway. And before you know it, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Pete Buttigieg, and Andrew Yang are all on stage arguing with Joe Biden – who just looks confused – about how to bail out half the country from their student loans.

In other words, it got bad enough to become a heated political topic – right up there with our involvement in foreign wars. And whether or not we should keep building “the wall.”

Suddenly, student loans were terrifying. They’re everyone’s absolute last option for how to pay for college. That’s not entirely fair. Student loans are a necessary option for the many college students, no matter what their age range or where they’re attending. And if you learn how to save money on a student loan, it can be a really good option for you. But let’s look at some other possible answers for how to pay for college first, then come back to them.

Save Up Ahead of Time

Here’s a great plan: before you enroll in college, work real hard and save up lots of money. So when it’s time, you can just pay cash and the problem is solved.

Alright, thanks for reading! We’ll catch you next time when we talk about—

What’s that? This isn’t a realistic plan? Are you sure?

Obviously, it’s ideal if you’re able to start separate savings account well ahead of time, whether the student is you or your offspring or anyone else for whom you’re responsible. Keep in mind that even a few thousand dollars can make a huge difference when it’s time figuring out how to pay for college. In addition to tuition, there are application fees, textbooks to buy, on-campus housing, and endless other expenses to consider. The ability to pay for many of these peripheral costs out of savings simplifies things considerably. And the less you have to borrow, the better.

Grants and Scholarships

Everyone knows that grants and scholarships are amazing, primarily because you don’t have to pay them back. The trick, sometimes, is finding them. They come from so many different sources. And because they’re often privately funded and target specific schools, demographics, majors, or other factors, there’s no one source for locating all for which you might qualify.

That does not mean, however, that you should ever, ever, EVER pay someone to look for grants, scholarships, or any other sort of financial aid for you. There are no secret codes for tracking these things down – no private databases or inside tracks. Every possible bit of information related to financial aid is free for the asking, and that’s how it should stay.

I’m going to assume you’re already familiar with the FAFSA. It’s your one-stop ticket for anything offered through state or federal government or the college or other post-secondary institution of your choice. The FAFSA acts as an informational tool for schools you’re considering, so they can help you with options. And a sort of universal student loan locator – at least when it comes to traditional student loan options.

You should always complete a FAFSA early in the process, however you plan on paying for school and whether you expect to qualify for aid or not.

The stuff that we’re talking about are things like that $500 scholarship your parents’ church offers for anyone going into the ministry, or the $2000 a local Native American group has available for anyone who can establish tribal membership or money from a local industry to support students pursuing training in electronic engineering or plasma physics or arts and crafts. Whatever it is they need more of but can’t find enough of.

The Magical Grant and Scholarship Locator

Do you have a mirror handy? It’s necessary for the sacred ritual which calls forth She-or-He Who Knows How To Pay For College Via Grants and Scholarships. You’ll also need a small glass of wine – preferably something red and inexpensive – and one of those little party favors you blow so it uncurls and makes that horrible baby duck noise. How many candles you light, and of what sort, is entirely up to you, as long as you have enough light to use the mirror.

Ready? It would be better if this part were in Latin. But I’m going to stick with modern English so it’s more accessible.

Hold up the mirror carefully, so that you can see your reflection in the candlelight. Now repeat these words: “I should start looking for some grants and scholarships myself because no one else is going to do it for me. And I’m not foolish enough to pay someone to do it.” Now, drink the wine and blow the party favor in celebration of a spell well-done, then get to work.

Gather all the information from the high school/college office

Start with your (or your kid’s) high school counselors or the college and career office in your district, if such a thing exists. You may find tons of excellent information, or you may be handed a few generic brochures or pointed to a website or two. They may be totally confused as to why you even asked. That’s OK, though, because it was worth asking. Sometimes those high school counselors are a gold mine.

Next, talk to the financial aid offices at your top 2 or 3 choices for where you’d like to attend. Find out what connections they have, what they know about, what they suggest. Your chances are much better with this group. Since they don’t make money unless you come to school there, and coming to school there means finding a way to pay for it. Try everything they suggest, whether it makes sense to you or not. No matter how successful, or not, we’re not done.

More Magical Locating (Still Figuring Out How to Pay for College)

Go to your local library (or call, if for some reason we’re all still “social distancing” by the time you’re ready to get started) and tell them what you’re looking for. Once again, you’ll often hit gold with this option. But it depends on who answers the phone or who’s at the desk. If you don’t get satisfactory responses the first time, try again during a different time of day or – better yet – a different branch.

Get online, but let me repeat – NO LEGIT ORGANIZATION IS GOING TO TRY TO CHARGE YOU FOR GRANT OR SCHOLARSHIP INFORMATION. You’re better off trying to help out that Nigerian Prince if you insist on being careless with your financial and personal information online. Instead, try the U.S. Department of Labor’s free scholarship search tool. Search the name of your state plus the words “grants and scholarships.”

Ask your parents to check with their employers. The bigger the company, the better the chances they have some sort of aid available. If you’re working, check with your employer. Even companies like McDonald’s are advertising their willingness to help with tuition for their employees Although, it’s probably safe to assume there are some strings and limitations attached.

But that’s OK because your goal at this stage isn’t to accept or refuse anything – it’s to gather options and information. Remember, you’re the Magical Grant and Scholarship Locator. By which I mean, you’re putting in the time and effort to find grants and scholarships to help you figure out how to pay for college.

How to Pay for College? Get Affirmative With Your Actions

Finally, ask yourself what “groups” you might belong to. Any demographic outside of “generic straight white able-bodied male” has organizations and advocates scattered across the country, many of whom offer small grants or scholarships for those who qualify. Now, you may be the sort who doesn’t like to see yourself as a member of this group or that. Maybe your politics or personal preferences are such that you don’t want to “play that card” for personal gain.

With all due respect, in this case, you need to get over that and apply for the grant or scholarship. The best thing you can do for yourself, your “group,” your community, family, state, or nation, is getting that education and be all you can be personally, professionally, and financially. If that means that for once in your life you have a chance to exploit the fact that you’re a one-legged transgendered Czech-Irish Buddhist, then go for it.

Don’t worry, we’re not going to think less of you for claiming that $400 stipend from the local chapter of similar folks.

Student Loan Shopping

There are a number of things to consider when it comes to student loans. And figuring out how to pay for college.

Traditional student loans (the ones offered through the federal government) have several advantages:

  • Fees and interest rates tend to be lower than what you might otherwise qualify for.
  • Your credit score is not a major factor in determining whether or not you qualify.
  • Repayment is often deferred until graduation or sometime thereafter.
  • Repayment can be tied to your income, so the less you make, the less your payments.
  • There are sometimes options for “debt forgiveness” if you work in certain professions or specified geographical locations.

Now, I’m about to talk about some other options for how to pay for college, or at least how to pay for part of your post-secondary education in other ways, should you so choose. That doesn’t mean I’m against student loans. As with any loan, I merely suggest you pay attention to the details. And don’t assume anything about the terms or your ability to repay without taking some time to consider all of the possibilities.

I’m not interested in telling you WHAT to do, my friend. If you’re about to enter an institution of higher learning, you should be able to do student loan shopping, gather information and consider your options. Then decide for yourself how to pay for college, yes?

Paying For College With Personal Loans

A personal loan is your most basic sort of loan. You borrow a specific amount for a set length of time. And agree to an interest rate and a structured, predictable plan of repayment. The terms you’re able to secure are largely driven by your credit history and three-digit credit score. Although, your current income and anticipated employment may play a role as well.

If you’re pursuing post-secondary education other than that offered in a traditional four-year university, a personal loan for students might be a helpful option. Not all forms of training or education qualify for traditional college loans, or the amount may be modest enough that you’d rather tackle it like any other financed expense. I’m not pushing this option for everyone. But depending on your circumstances, it might be the simplest and most obvious solution.

The Income Share Agreement (ISA)

This is an arrangement you make directly with your school of choice. Rather than borrow money for tuition with specific terms guiding repayment, you commit a percentage of your future income to the school instead.

The flexibility of the income share agreement is obvious – if you end up with a strong income, the school gets paid back quickly. If you don’t make as much as you’d hoped, your repayment is based on a percentage of that rather than the amount you actually owe. Typical ISA agreements are tied to a length of time rather than a dollar amount. So if you agree to give the school 7% of your income for ten years, you might end up paying way less for your education (if things aren’t going well) or double what other students pay (if your career takes off).

Most financial experts aren’t in love with ISAs. Do some research and make up your own mind before considering this option.

College Student Credit Cards

The answer to how to pay for college is almost never “Use a credit card!”  That doesn’t mean, however, that responsible credit card use can’t be a part of your plan for incidental expenses as you pursue your education.

Keep in mind that while credit card companies aren’t necessarily evil. They do have a vested interest in “hooking you” early. And start you along the path of eternal repayment without ever being repaid. Don’t just assume you know all there is to know about credit cards for students and fall into the trap of going to either extreme – careless use and irresponsible debt or absolute refusal to carry any form of plastic.

College, among other things, is about learning to adults. Responsible credit card use is part of Adulting 101. With great power comes great responsibility. And learning to use revolving credit responsibly gives you financial power and stronger long-term credit.

Conclusion

There’s no one answer on how to pay for college. Take some time and weigh your options, and above all else, DON’T GIVE UP. It can be a frustrating mess sorting through your choices and keeping up with everything, but guess what?

Welcome to college and the messy world of grown-ups. It may not be easy, but you’ll get so much better at it is difficult that you won’t even notice after a while.

Quote about motivation

Let us know if we can help.

A Study Guide to Save Money on Your Student Loan

The cost of higher education is rising and all it seems to do is continue to rise. The national student debt, like all other debts, is on the rise. The price tag alone is enough to make people decide not to go to college. Do not be one of those people. Even with the rising costs, there is still a lot of value in a college degree. The good news is there are ways for you to get money to help you pay for college. One of them is a personal loan for students. Be careful with that option as it may not have the same favorable terms as other types of student loans. Even better news is once you have one, there are ways for you to save money on your student loan.

Tips For Saving Money Before Selecting A Loan

There are different ways to save money on your student loan but it is important to think about these items before you select your loan. This may sound like an obvious statement, but it has value, so I am going to say it. Borrowing less money will save the amount of money you owe for your student loans. You should keep in mind that there is interest on top of the actual amount of money you borrow. That interest increases the amount of money you have to repay. When you are determining how much money you need, you may forget that you have to pay it back at some point. You can find a job and make some money to pay for your college expenses so you do not have to borrow as much money.

Another way to borrow less money is to begin saving money ahead of when you need it. If you are going to school right now, it may be too late for you to save in advance. However, if you know you are not going to school for another few years, start saving money now. Save as much money as you can so that is less you need to borrow. You will be surprised at how much money you can save yourself in the long run.

What Are Some Types of Student Loans?

Before you can think about ways to save money on your student loan, you first must understand the details of a student loan. When you begin student loan shopping, you will find there are many different options available to you. A student loan is when you borrow money to pay for school and you make a promise to repay. The loans are for tuition, room and board, and books. Some student loans are for specific items. You may find a loan only to realize that it is for tuition only and you cannot use it for anything else.

Traditional Student Loans

With a traditional student loan, you can borrow money from a traditional bank or through a federally funded program. When you repay the loan, you are also paying interest on top of the money that you borrow. Loans come from different sources and each one may have unique benefits. Usually, the interest rate of a student loan is a fixed rate and often lower than other interest rates. You may not need a credit check to be approved for your student loan. Carefully consider all of your options when you are making decisions about student loans. They may have long term impacts on you and your credit score. Normally you do not have to repay the student loans until you graduate from college or reduce your status to part-time. Most loans have flexible repayment plans and are easy to finance or postpone.

Income Share Agreement

An income share agreement is much different from a student loan. An income share agreement is something you typically set up with the school in which you plan to enroll. However, there are other institutions that will set up an income share agreement with you. With this agreement, you are promising to pay back the money for tuition after you have graduated and have a job. You pay back the loan for your tuition with a percentage of your future wages. When you and the school agree to the terms of your loan, you are both projecting how much money you will make after graduating. You are making the assumption that you are able to find a job and will earn a certain salary. Even if you do not have a job, you are expected to repay this loan.

Getting a student loan from a credible lender is extremely important. You don’t want to get scammed. Loanry is here to help you make sure you’re on the right path.

A Cosigner could help you with a private loan

You can consider having a cosigner, such as a parent, and get a private loan. Even if you are able to get a loan without a cosigner, you might want to consider one because it could help you get a lower interest rate. You may not know this but when two credit scores are used for a loan, lenders look at the higher credit score and base the interest rate off of the higher one. This can help you obtain lower rates. It is also possible that you might be able to get a discount because you have a cosigner. You should remember that anyone that cosigns for a loan for you is also responsible for the debt. That means that the person is on the hook for paying the loan, too. If you default on the loan, then your cosigner is financially responsible.

Stay Away From Capitalized Interest

Do you know what interest capitalization is?

How to save money on your student loan - Example of capitalized interestIf you do not, you should. This is another way that you can save money on your student loan. When you take on student loans, you do not pay them until some date in the future. During that time you are not making payments, the interest may accrue. If it accrues, then it is capitalized by being added to the balance of your loan. This means that you will owe more money when it comes time to make payments.

This process can increase the cost of your loan by about 20 percent by the time you have graduated. If you have a loan that accrues interest as soon as you sign the paperwork, you should pay the interest as it is accruing. Doing this helps you can keep your loan amount from growing. Depending on your type of loan, it may capitalize on a monthly basis, which for you means the amount of the loan grows faster and a greater amount. Federal loans do not begin to capitalize until you start the repayment portion of your loan.

Can I Use My Student Loans As A Tax Deduction?

Yes, you can use the interest that you accrue on your student loans as a tax deduction. Keep in mind this will not save money on your student loan. However, it can help you with the amount of money that the IRS considers income when you file your taxes. You cannot use your entire loan amount as a tax deduction, but you are able to deduct up to $2,500 in interest. It does not matter if you have a private loan or a federal loan, you can still deduct the interest from your taxes. The great thing about a deduction of student loan interest is it is considered an above the line deduction so you will not have to itemize all of your deductions to claim it.

Can I Prepay My Student Loans?

One of the great things about a student loan is that they do not have prepayment penalties. Neither private not federal loans penalize you for paying your loan early. Some lenders charge you if you pay off your loan earlier than the timeframe they have given. There is no such penalty for student loans. The federal government actually has a law in place that prevents lenders from charging you for paying off your student loans early. This gives you free range to make as many payments on your loan as you would like. One of the ways to save money on your student loan is to make more than one payment per month.

Even if you can make a second payment in the full amount, any amount you can pay helps reduce your student loan balance faster. This helps you save money because you are reducing the amount of interest you have to pay on the loan. The interest accrues over the time you take to repay the loan, so the less time you take to pay the loan, the less money you pay in the long run. Paying more money each month can actually save you thousands of dollars in interest. Making the sacrifice to pay the extra money is worth it because it saves you in the long run. Even making an extra payment every two months can help accelerate the time it takes you to pay the loan.

Can I Consolidate My Student Loans?

You can also save money on your student loan by consolidating your loans. This allows you to combine all of your loans and debts into one payment, with hopefully a lower interest rate. This allows you to get your debt under control when you graduate and at the beginning of you needing to repay your loans. One thing to consider when you are considering consolidating your loans, it may have a negative impact on your credit score. You are taking on a new loan, which adds to your debt and that may cause your credit score to go down. There is a period of time when you consolidating your debt when you take on the new loan but the old loans are not paid off, which increases your debt substantially. Once the old debt is paid, the amount of debt you have goes down and your credit score may increase.

What Is Student Loan Forgiveness?

Another way you can save money on your student loan is to see if you can have your loans forgiven. A word of caution when it comes to loan forgiveness is that some programs are called loan forgiveness but are just consolidation programs. When a program claims to be a loan forgiveness program, it comes from the federal government. Any program from anywhere else is not a true loan forgiveness program. They are not easy programs for which to be approved.

You can only qualify for many of these programs after you have made payments on them for a certain number of years. Those payments must be timely and for the correct amount. There are also some specific degree programs that qualify for loan forgiveness. Public service, teachers, and doctors typically qualify for loan forgiveness. If you are in a public service field, you have to make payments for about 10 years before you can get forgiveness, but at that point you can qualify for 100 percent forgiveness. Teachers working for a qualifying school for at least five years and then you can qualify for loan forgiveness for anywhere from $5,000 to $17,500 in student loans.

What Student Loan Forgiveness Options are Available?

How Do I Qualify For Forgiveness?

If you can qualify for loan forgiveness, you can potentially save money on your student loan. There are websites that provide information on student forgiveness and potential repayment plans. These websites allow you to fill out some information that gives you an idea of what type of forgiveness you may be able to receive. You can also determine the balance of your student loans and gives you the ability to have some control over your payments.

You may not qualify for forgiveness for your student loans. But you may be able to qualify for a lower repayment plan. And you may be able to get an incomes based repayment which is based on your income level. You may be able to qualify for a payment that is based on your earnings. When you earn more money, your payment amount goes up. When you are making a lower income when you first start employment, you can have a lower payment amount. It is possible that you might be able to qualify for a minimum monthly payment of $0. You do have to apply for this once a year to re-certify the repayment plan that you have. It is something that is reviewed on a yearly basis.

Can I Get A Lower Rate For My Student Loans?

There are a few ways you can save money on your student loan by getting a lower interest rate. One way to get a lower interest rate is to refinance your student loans. When you refinance your loans, you are getting a new loan at a better interest rate. The new lender pays off the debt to the old lender and then you repay the new lender each month. By getting a lower interest rate, you can reduce your monthly payment amount. If you get a lower payment amount, you can still continue to pay the old higher amount to pay off the loans faster.

Another way to get a lower monthly amount on your student loan is to have your payments automatically deducted. Many private lenders and federal loans offer a discount when you allow them to deduct your payment directly from your checking account. You could get a reduction of as much as .25 percent from your student loans when you allow the lender to take the money directly from your account. This allows the lender to take the money on the day it is due instead of waiting for you to mail them a check. There is no doubt that you are going to pay the lender because they are automatically taking the money from your account.

Conclusion

This article provides you a large amount of information about how to save money on your student loan. You should have all the information about student loans before you make a final decision on how to move forward. There are many options available to you and you may have to choose more than one option to be able to have enough money to pay for college. Student loans have long repayment periods, so you will be paying the loans for a long time after graduation.

As a result, you should make sure that you fully understand what you are agreeing to when you take on a loan. Once you have the loan and you have finished school, it is time to starting making those payments. There are many ways to save money on your student loan. You should be aware of them. That way, when the time is right, you can make the best decision for you. That decision may be different over time, so you should know what options are available as you go through the repayment process.

The Ultimate Study Guide to Student Credit Cards

Being a college student these days is hard. I am sure it has always had its share of challenges, but I would agree that it is much harder than it used to be. The cost of college has risen exponentially and parents can no longer afford it. That means students must try to get scholarships and grants. Students must take out loans and get jobs to pay for the rest. It is not just tuition, room and board anymore. There are books, computers, equipment and additional fees that need to be paid. Many college students are leaving school with the burden of heavy debt that takes them an incredibly long time to repay. Most college students have a job of some sort which means they get little sleep. They also have access to student credit cards, which as we all know are a blessing and a curse.

What Is A Credit Card?

Technically, a credit card is a rectangular piece of plastic that you use in place of cash to make purchases. In a store, you need the actual card, but when shopping online all you need is the credit card number. When you use the credit card, you are agreeing to pay back the money with potential interest and fees.

The credit card company, which is typically a bank, is basically giving you a line of credit. This means they are agreeing to allow you to borrow up to a certain amount of money. You can use that line of credit incrementally, or all at once. However much of the line of credit you use is due within 30 days.

To make it easier to understand, I will explain with numbers. Please keep in mind, these are not real numbers. I am making them up only to help you understand the concept.

A credit card company gives you a limit of $2,000. That means you can use that $2,000 in any way and any time that you wish. However, in about 30 days, they want you to repay the money you use. If you do not pay it all, you must pay interest charges. Those charges differ depending on the bank and your credit. For purposes of this explanation, I am going to say your interest is 20 percent. There is a minimum that the credit card company wants you to pay each month.

You have $2,000 available. You spend $300. That means you now have $1,700 available. When the bill is due, you pay all $300. You now have $2,000 available until the next time you use the credit card.

However, let us say that you spend $1,000 and you cannot pay the full amount. You have spent $1,000, so you only have $1,000 available. Since you cannot pay the full amount, the credit card expects at least a minimum payment from you. They have told you that the minimum payment is $100. You pay $500. That means your available credit is now $1,500. But, you have satisfied your minimum payment, but have no paid the full balance. That means you have interest applied to the other $500 that you did not pay. At 20 percent interest, that is $100. That is added to your balance due, which just went from $500 to $600 and your available credit amount goes down from $1,500 to $1,400.

These same basic concepts apply to student credit cards, except they are meant to draw the attention of students and often have a lower available balance.

What Is Revolving Credit?

I have given information about credit cards and how they work. That available credit that I mentioned in the section above is called revolving credit. I want to take a moment to explain what that means. It is a key piece of information for you when it comes to debt and credit scores. Revolving credit, credit cards in particular, tend to have a high interest rate. Much higher than you find with an installment loan. I will share more about installment loans a little later. The interest rate on a credit card is anywhere between 9 percent and 25 percent.

Revolving credit gives you a great amount of flexibility, which is one of the best things about it. It works really well if you are able to pay off your credit card balance each month. You should know that every time you make a purchase with your credit card or carry a balance, it may impact your credit score. When using revolving credit, you should use it wisely. Even student credit cards have revolving credit and it is a good way to create smart habits.

You should be sure to keep your credit card balances as low as you can. While you can use all of the credit extended to you, that does not mean that you should. When you use all of the credit extended to you, it will lower your credit score. I will explain more about credit and credit scores a little later, so stick with me and keep reading. Your goal should be to use less than 30 percent of the credit given to you. I know that can be challenging at times. When you find yourself over 30 percent, pay down as much of it as you can.

Even if you cannot pay the full amount, make sure you pay at least the minimum payment. If you do not pay the minimum payment, you will incur fees. Often, the credit card company increases your percentage rate and it impacts your credit score. Make sure you do not open too many credit card accounts at one time. This could cause your credit score to decrease. You can also be denied simply because you have applied for too many cards in too short a time.

What Is Credit?

I want to talk about credit for a moment. It is important that you understand this concept of credit. If you do not understand what it is, you probably will not be able to build a positive credit history. Your credit history is a listing of all of the money you have borrowed and from where over the past 7 to 10 years. Bet you are thinking, “I have not borrowed any money” or “I am not old enough to have credit history”. Those are real problems and concerns for college students. This is precisely why there are items such as student credit cards.

Your credit report is what lists all of that credit history. It is actually a detailed listing of more than just any money you have borrowed. It lists addresses that you have used, as well as names that you have used. There is probably way more information on your credit report than you realize. There are three credit bureaus that report information to your credit report. Those credit bureaus are TransUnion, Experian, and Equifax. Unfortunately, not all of the credit bureaus receive information from all of your creditors.

A key piece of information that appears on your credit report is your credit score. This is a three digit number that gives creditors and lenders an idea of your creditworthiness. The most common credit score is the FICO score and falls between 350 to 850. Most people have a credit score between 600 to 750. Good credit falls between 670 to 800. Anything below 570 is the danger zone of bad credit.

What If I Do Not Have Credit?

This is a typical predicament for college students, or those in their late teens and early twenties. It is a common problem, right? If you do not have a credit history, then you have a low credit score. You cannot build credit history because you cannot get credit because you have a low credit score. So what do you do?

The answer is start small. While it may seem frustrating at first, once you take small steps to build credit history, you begin to build it quickly. The other key is start small and be smart about what you do to build your credit. I am going to list some tips on how to build credit and how to take care of it.

You can get student credit cards. These are credit cards geared for students and with them in mind. The credit card companies understand that students do not have a strong credit history. As a result, they offer them cards that have low available balances to get them started towards building credit. The key is to only use small amounts of the credit at a time and pay off the credit card each month. This will help you build a positive credit history and will not get you into a place where you cannot pay off your debt.

You may have to get a secured credit card first. These types of cards are perfect for people with no credit. These cards are intended to help people build credit. A secured credit card comes from a bank and has your own money behind it. You deposit money into an account. The credit card uses money from that account. Your available limit on a secured credit card is based on the amount of money in the account. When you make payments on this credit card, it positively impacts your credit score and helps you build credit.

What Are Other Ways That I Can Build Credit?

There are some ways other than student credit cards to build credit. You can get a student loan. These loans are available to students and lenders understand that these students do not usually have credit. They are a great way to begin to build credit by making monthly payments. Whatever types of credit you do get, make sure you pay the bills on time. One of the top reasons for poor credit it late or missed payments. It is important to pay all of your bills on time. While bills such as insurance, utilities, and even cell phone do not report to the credit bureaus every time you make a payment, they do report if you do not make a payment.

This gets tricky because paying them timely does not help your credit. However, not paying them absolutely hurts your credit. You can request a third party report these payments to the credit bureaus, but they do charge you to do that. This may be something that you want to consider if you are looking for ways to build up positive credit. You can purchase a car as a way to build credit. This is often something that a recent college graduate does. If you cannot get a loan on your own, you can have a co signer on the loan.

This is helpful when you have little or bad credit. You should make sure this person has a good credit history. When you pay your monthly payments, it helps you build your credit history. You should keep in mind that if you do not make your payments, it becomes the responsibility of the co signer to make them. If you do not pay the loan, it negatively impacts your co signer’s credit as well as yours.

Advantages Of Credit Cards

There are some advantages to having student credit cards. It truly depends on how well you use your credit card. A credit card can give you some flexibility in your spending. It can help you build credit and teach you smart habits. A credit allows you to potentially keep money in the bank and let it accrue interest while you purchase items today and pay for them within 30 days. It also allows you to make a large purchase today even though you may not have all the cash.

A credit card can also be a safe way to make purchases instead of using a debit card. If the information is stolen, it is not your money in the bank that is being used. It still stinks to have a credit card and your information stolen. When it is a credit card, you can freeze that account so no one else can access it and it is not your money that is frozen. When you pay off your credit card balance each month, it is an effective money management tool. It allows you to be in control of your money.

Disadvantages Of Credit Cards

There are also some major disadvantage to having student credit cards. The major disadvantage is the debt part. As you all know the debt in the US just continues to rise. College students rarely come out of college without any debt these days. The average cost of college is also rising which adds to the average college debt.

As I stated above, credit cards are a great tool to manage money. However, you need to remain in control of your credit cards and your money. Using credit cards is a slippery slope to finding yourself in a puddle of uncontrollable debt. You need to stay on top of your spending, your available credit card balance and the amount that you owe. If you see that the amount you owe is climbing, you need to get control of it. You cannot ignore it if the number continues to increase and you feel you are unable to pay your debt. At that point, you should stop using your credit card and make a large effort to pay the bill.

Are Student Credit Cards Different?

The only real difference with student credit cards is that they are marketed towards students. They are the same as a credit card that is not marketed to students, but they typically have a lower credit card limit. These cards are usually ones for which a student will get approved. It helps to keep students and their spending in check. It may be a challenge for students to understand how to manage their credit at first. The limits are kept low so that they do not get themselves into too much trouble.

Sometimes these cards offer special rewards and promotions to students such as rewards for good grades. Discover offers a student card that lets students earn a $20 credit on their statement if they get at least a 3.0 GPA. They are eligible for this reward for the first five years that they have the card. Sometimes, students are also eligible for an introductory rate of 0 percent interest. This special offer does not last as long as it would on a non student card, but it is a nice perk to have for a while. After that the interest rate goes up to anywhere between 14 percent and 24 percent interest.

What Are Student Loans?

Student loans are a serious consideration for all students. While both student loans and student credit cards are ways to manage money, they are very different ways. Student loans are money you borrow to pay for school that you promise to repay. The lender charges you interest as a fee for lending you the money. There are different lenders for student loans and each one has a separate set of benefits. There are different rules and limitations based on if you are a graduate or undergraduate student. Professional working students and parents may also have some different considerations when it comes to loans for them. You do not have to make any payments on most student loans until you graduate or reduce your credits to become a part time student. That is not the case for all loans, so be sure to read all the fine print.

Many student loans have a flexible plan for repayment or have easy rules to postpone repayment. You usually receive a lower interest rate on student loans and you may not need to have a credit check. Most student loans are fixed interest, which means whatever the interest rate is when you sign the paperwork is locked in and will not change. Students should always so some student loan shopping to make sure they find the best loan for their needs.


Are There Different Types of Student Loans?

When you are thinking about student loans, you often only think of loans specifically to pay for tuition, books, room and board. However, there are other expenses that students have. Many of them use student credit cards to pay their other needs, such as toiletries and vitamins and other every day expenses. Students may also have needs for equipment or even travel.

I know you might be thinking, travel what?, they are supposed to be in school learning. Stop and think for a second how hard most students work in school. Some students all they do is go to class, study, and work. They need a break, too. Even if it might be a quick weekend trip. Even if you do not agree that they need time to relax, it is nice to know that there are options such as loans for travel. A travel loan is basically a personal loan. Like a student loan, these loans happen when a lender agrees to let the student borrow the money. The student promises to repay the loan by making regular monthly payments.

Here is where it gets tricky and where personal loans differ from student loans. A personal loan must be paid back immediately. There is not deferring payment. Also, interest rates tend to be higher on personal loans than on student loans. Lenders of a personal loan also do a credit check so for this type of loan, your credit matters.

Can Student Loans Be Forgiven?

There are some strict requirements around which types of loans that can be forgiven and when. There are two major student loan forgiveness plans for student loans. These plans do not apply to student credit cards. One is for those who enter into public service jobs. This forgiveness plan only starts after you have made 120 payments, which is about 10 years of payments. You also must work for a specific employer, such as a volunteer for AmeriCorps or the Peace Corps, or some other government agencies. There are some other employers that qualify as well and you may be able to get the rest of your federal direct loan forgiven.

Teachers may also be able to get their loans forgiven. They must work for a qualifying school for a least five years. They may be able to receive from $5,000 to $17,500 in loan forgiveness. Studentloans.gov can provide you all the information that you need to determine if your loans can be forgiven. It does not hurt to take a look at the qualifications.

Should I Get A Student Loan?

This is a question that only you, and maybe your parents, can answer. You have to do what works best for your current situation. I would make that recommendation that you carefully consider taking on a loan or student credit cards. It is easy to think, I know I will get a job when I graduate and I will be able to pay back this loan. However, you might not. It is fairly easy for a full time student in college to obtain a student loan. I caution you to consider this. Just because you can, does not always mean that you should. You should use this same consideration for student credit cards.

I know when looking at the cost of college, it is easy to become overwhelmed by the price tag. We already know that the average student debt is high. Student loans and student credit cards add to that figure. Before you take on any debt, consider how much money you need. You should make sure that you have exhausted all of your options for scholarships and grants before taking on debt. There are many scholarships available, more than you realize. You should do all of your research first before you assume that taking on debt is the only answer for you. Perhaps you are able to make up the difference with a part time job. You may not be able to, but at least know that for sure before you agree to a loan.

Conclusion

As I stated at the beginning of this article, being a college student is hard today. I would not want to be in that place again. The cost of everything is rising while earnings are decreasing. There is a large appeal for student credit cards and loans. We live in a world where we want more stuff and we want it now. Before you give into the allure of what appears to be free money. Remember it is not and you must pay it all back.