March 16, 2018 By The College Juice
Student Loan Advice from the Experts
Student loan advice isn’t something you’d accept from just anyone, so why not go to the experts? From understanding the total cost of the loan, to how to balance payment and savings, here’s everything you need to know – from the people who know best.
Consider the total cost of your loan, not just monthly payments.
College Ave Student Loans – Five Key Factors to Compare When Shopping for Student Loans
Monthly payments are important factors when choosing a loan, but they aren’t the only thing to consider. It’s important to also keep in mind that the interest rate, the number of years you’ll be paying the loan for, and the total amount borrowed all affect the total cost of your loan. A low monthly payment paired with a high interest rate could have you paying more in the long run.
Check out the College Ave student loan calculator shows you how choosing different repayment options can affect both your monthly payment and the total cost of your loan.
Know your grace period.
The Institute for College Access & Success – The Top 10 Student Loan Tips for Recent Graduates
A grace period is how long you have after finishing school before you begin making full principle and interest student loan payments. This can vary by the type of loan, but also by lender. Check your paperwork to see when your first payment is due – and don’t miss it.
Sign up for automatic payments.
College Ave Student Loans – How to Reduce the Cost of Your Student Loan
Signing up for automatic payments – an option most lenders offer – can lead to an interest rate reduction, typically 0.25%. Not only do automatic payments help reduce your total cost and monthly payment, they help you build good credit by ensuring that your payments are always made on time. Plus, it’s one less thing to worry about each month.
Strike a balance between payments and savings.
Financial Planner, Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz – via Business Insider
Paying off your debt is incredibly important, but you have other financial needs as well. Once your monthly student loan payments are accounted for, it’s important to figure out your savings plan and debt repayment plan. If you have credit card debt or a car loan, start by paying that down first. If not, your main priorities should be saving for retirement (especially if your company matches 401k contributions!) and building up an emergency fund.
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