How to Pay Off Your Student Loans Like a Badass
In 2014, the Economist reported that U.S. student debt exceeded $1.2 trillion. This is a lot of money. I was one of those people. Forbes reported in February 2017 that student debt reached $1.3 trillion, and that was without me being part of the equation. I had made extra payments each month and was able to refinance my loans due to successful repayment. My repayment was successful because I took on freelancing gigs and extra jobs that increased my income.
I simply could not listen to the haters and debt shamers. Those who didn’t believe I could pay off my student loan debt quickly couldn’t bring me down. Listening to that nonsense just reinforces the false belief that you can’t do something.
I knew I could, and I did.
Even if you have to find a company that offers student loan repayment assistance, use every resource available to you as long as it isn’t something that is just going to throw you into more debt. You also don’t want something that is going to make the debt hang around longer than it should. You want to pay off that debt and start building your net worth!
Paying off Student Loans IS Possible
Many people get overwhelmed with the thought of paying off their student loans fast. The reason is that the amount owed is overwhelming. When you have tens of thousands of dollars staring you in the face, you naturally are going to feel overwhelmed.
But don’t let it get to you!
Tell yourself that you can do this. You can set a goal and reach it. It has been done, so it can be done. If others have paid off their student loans fast, so can you!
Even if you are in you aren’t in your 20s anymore and you feel that it’s too late to tackle a debt like this, it is never too late. If you’re in your 30s or even your 40s and still dealing with student loan debt, you most likely know how crippling it is.
It’s time to buckle down and tackle it like the badass you are. Here are some ways:
- Treat your student loan like a mortgage and increase your payments so you can cut into the principal faster. If your minimum payment is $250 a month, pay $500. If you can afford it, bump it up even more.
- Create more income for yourself by taking advantage of every moneymaking opportunity you have time for. Good at writing? Take on a freelance writing gig. Love to take surveys? Do what I did and join a legitimate survey company, like Swagbucks.
- Cut back on spending so you can put that money into your student loan debt. Even if you have other debts, there is a good chance your student loan debt is large. You need to get rid of it. Not shopping as much, taking fewer trips, and using coupons at the grocery checkout can make a difference.
- Student loan repayment assistance tends to be offered through some employers. It isn’t like tuition reimbursement. This is actually something new that is becoming more popular. The amounts aren’t typically high. You may get between $5,000 and $10,000 in assistance.
With 1 in 3 workers owing student loan debt, it’s not likely the amount will increase much more. Also, the payments are made directly to the lender and they are considered taxable income, but Congress is thinking about making repayment assistance tax-free.
If You’re Still in College
If you’re still in college, it isn’t too early to start paying back your loans. You can talk to the lender and start now so you aren’t stuck with as much debt after graduation. When you graduate and you’re ready to start your career, you don’t want a large chunk of your income going to your student loan lender.
You also don’t want to be like me and make minimum payments for six years before realizing you’re not getting anywhere with it. I buckled down and brought in extra income where I could and tackled the debt as part of my plan to retire by the age of 35.
Getting a head start is possible, even if you’re not making a significant income at the moment.
You CAN Do This!
No matter how old you are, you can do this. You have to tighten the reigns around your finances, but it becomes well worth it when you can live the way you want to live. If you don’t pay down student loan debt as fast as possible, you’re delaying living your life. No one really wants to do that.
As a math teacher by day and personal blogger by night, Jacob is constantly looking at and analyzing numbers. He shares some of his best tips and tricks @DollarDiligence.
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