Student loans can seem like an great way to get a degree that will lead to a prosperous future. But they can also be a costly mistake if you are not being wise about borrowing. You should educate yourself about what student debt really means for your future. The tips below can help you become a wiser borrower.
If you are having a hard time paying back your student loans, call your lender and let them know this. There are normally several circumstances that will allow you to qualify for an extension and/or a payment plan. You will have to furnish proof of this financial hardship, so be prepared.
Know your grace periods so you don’t miss your first student loan payments after graduating college. Stafford loans typically give you six months before starting payments, but Perkins loans might go nine. Private loans are going to have repayment grace periods of their own choosing, so read the fine print for each particular loan.
Speak with your lender often. Make sure they know your current address and phone number. Also, be sure you immediately read any kind of mail you get from a lender, whether it’s electronic or paper. Take whatever actions are necessary as soon as you can. It can be quite costly if you miss anything.
Try getting a part-time job to help with college expenses. Doing this can help you cover some of your student loan costs. It can also reduce the amount that you need to borrow in student loans. Working these kinds of positions can even qualify you for your college’s work study program.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions about federal loans. Not many people understand what these types of loans can offer or what their regulations and rules are. If you have any questions about these loans, contact your student loan adviser. Funds are limited, so talk to them before the application deadline.
Before applying for student loans, it is a good idea to see what other types of financial aid you are qualified for. There are many scholarships available out there and they can reduce the amount of money you have to pay for school. Once you have the amount you owe reduced, you can work on getting a student loan.
Sometimes consolidating your loans is a good idea, and sometimes it isn’t When you consolidate your loans, you will only have to make one big payment a month instead of lots of little ones. You may also be able to lower your interest rate. Be certain that any loan you take out to consolidate your student loans offers you the same variety and flexibility in borrower benefits, deferments and payment options.
Sometimes student loans are the only way that you can afford the degree that you dream of. But you need to keep your feet on the ground when it comes to borrowing. Consider how quickly the debt can add up and keep the above advice in mind as you decide on which type of loan is best for you.