Student loans can help you bridge the gap between being unable to afford to continue furthering your education and graduating from college. While student loans are beneficial, they also leave many graduates with a mountain of debt they find hard to pay.
Many students try to get through college without student loans. However, there are some cases when not applying for a student loan just isn’t feasible. If you fall into the category of college students who absolutely need a student loan to graduate, read on below for a few ways to stay on top of that student loan debt in 2021.
Live Frugally in College and Graduate School
Many students make the mistake of thinking they have unlimited funds through student loans while in school. Many college students have paid for vacations, bought new cars, and gone on shopping sprees with the student loan department’s checks.
It’s best to live frugally when you’re in college and graduate school and save your splurging until after you graduate and have a job that brings in a steady income. It’s important to remember that four years of carelessly spending your student loans can lead to decades of debt that you can’t afford to pay. Instead, live frugally, stay on a budget, and don’t use your student loan for anything if you don’t have to use it.
Consider Refinancing/Debt Consolidation
If you’ve already graduated and are having problems paying your student loans, then you might need to consider refinancing when student loan interest rates are low. You can also try debt consolidation.
If you have bills that you can’t pay due to your student loan payments, such as credit cards, loans, and the like, contact professionals to discuss your consolidation options as well as bad credit loan options if you need help.
Work While in School, and Find Work Shortly After Graduation
Not only should you watch your spending while you’re in college and graduate school if at all possible, but you should also work your way through school. If you have a job, even a part-time one, it’ll be easier to pay your bills while you refrain from using that student loan for things that aren’t school-related.
It’s best not to take time off after you graduate. Instead, go to work in your chosen field as soon as possible. You only have a tightly limited grace period before your student loan payments begin, and you want to be prepared to pay them.
Supplement Your Income
Your starting salary at the job you secure after you graduate might seem like the most money you’ve ever had in your bank account. While that might be true, once you’ve started paying rent, utilities, any credit cards you owe, and purchase groceries and other life necessities, it’s not nearly as much as you might think. Add a student loan payment on top of that, and you’ll be struggling to pay everything before you know it.
Many graduates find it’s best to get a part-time job for the weekends or do freelance work online to supplement their wages. While it’s not an ideal situation, if you want to whittle away at the student loan debt, it’s the best way to get the job done. If possible, take everything you make from your supplemental income and put it towards your student loan payments.
These are just a few of the ways that you can stay on top of your student loan debt in 2021. 2020 was a rough year for everyone, so these tips will help make 2021 better, at least on the student loan front.