Student loan debt can feel like a dark cloud hanging over your future- particularly if you just graduated college and may not have landed your “dream job,” yet. Here are some mistakes to avoid early on when paying back your student loan debt.
- You wait until the end of the grace period to begin making payments. Upon graduation, your lender will likely give you a grace period of six months to start paying back your debt. Nice of them, right? Wrong. On the contrary this is a trap. Most student loan debt begins accruing interest immediately upon graduation.
- You ignore the auto pay option. Automatic payments will deduct the amount directly from your checking account, ensuring you do not incur late fees or penalties. Most loan providers will also give you a 0.25 percentage discount if you do this.
- You fail to plan. It is important to strategize- particularly if you have multiple student loans with different lenders and different interest rates. The way you pay these off can make a big difference in how much interest you will pay in the long run.
- You do not consolidate your federal loans and refinance private loans. If monthly payments are too much for you, look into whether you qualify for an income-based repayment plan. Consider consolidating federal loans into a federal direct consolidation loan and refinancing your private loans.
- You do not make your student loan debt a priority. Financial experts advise to first prioritize your company’s 401(k) match program. Second, work to establish an emergency fund that will cover your living expenses for at least three months. Repaying your student loan debt should be at the top of this list.
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For borrowers who are struggling with student loan debt, relief options are available. Many student loan borrowers are unaware that they have rights and repayment options available to them, such as postponement of loan payments, reduction of payments or even a complete discharge of the debt. It is important you contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.