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Old 10-07-2007, 04:49 PM
 
70 posts, read 200,447 times
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Default 100K of student loan debt.. advice for paying this off?

Alright,

I'm about to graduate with about 100K of student loan debt. I imagine this would be typical if I were a med student or something, but I'm an engineer. Anyway, I am well aware that it was really silly of me to take on this much debt throughout my undergrad career, but I can't go back and change that now, all I can do is try to make it through this in one piece.

My question is, do you have any advice on how to pay this debt down quickly? Like, are there any ways to consolidate to get an APR less than this horrendous 8% that I've had for the last two years of college? Are there agencies that can help me? Anything like that?

I appreciate any advice you have.
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Old 10-07-2007, 06:31 PM
 
2,368 posts, read 5,137,562 times
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Whatever you do - remember that you can only CONSOLIDATE it once. So, that's it.

Also, some private loans (citi loan, etc...) can't be rolled in with federal (stafford or plus) loans.

If you're in Michigan (no reason that you would be) - the state has a great program for loans taken out after 1999 - where your interest drops immensely after 3 years of on time payments. You may want to look and see if whatever state your in has anything similar?

Otherwise, just budget it out (about 1K a month, roughly).. and make sure you make EVERY payment. When they default (my husband's did) the fees add up very quickly, and then they garnish your wages.

good luck!!!
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Old 10-07-2007, 08:15 PM
 
Location: in drifts of snow wherever you go
2,522 posts, read 30,599 times
Reputation: 692
Quote:
Originally Posted by greatfire View Post
Alright,

I'm about to graduate with about 100K of student loan debt. I imagine this would be typical if I were a med student or something, but I'm an engineer. Anyway, I am well aware that it was really silly of me to take on this much debt throughout my undergrad career, but I can't go back and change that now, all I can do is try to make it through this in one piece.

My question is, do you have any advice on how to pay this debt down quickly? Like, are there any ways to consolidate to get an APR less than this horrendous 8% that I've had for the last two years of college? Are there agencies that can help me? Anything like that?

I appreciate any advice you have.
I feel for you. The advice Briolat21 gave is good. You can only consolidate once, and you'll need to make payments of at least $1000/month.

Remember, you can write off student loan interest on your taxes.

They should have student take a course before they allow them to take out student loans. Unless someone sits down and teaches you about money, we have to learn through bad experiences like this.

Unfortunately, a student loan is something you're stuck with. In some instances, if you go into the military or teaching, they will forgive some of it. You might want to look into those options.

Greenie
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Old 10-07-2007, 10:36 PM
 
2,775 posts, read 5,180,761 times
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Well, what kind of engineer? The real engineers, with the mathematics and the numbers and the bridges and the physics? </cosby>

Or the, like, "Urban design engineer" B.ullS.hit degree? If the former, there is absolutely no reason why, on a tight budget for random expenses, you shouldn't pay this off very quickly.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:01 PM
 
70 posts, read 200,447 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coldwine View Post
Well, what kind of engineer? The real engineers, with the mathematics and the numbers and the bridges and the physics? </cosby>

Or the, like, "Urban design engineer" B.ullS.hit degree? If the former, there is absolutely no reason why, on a tight budget for random expenses, you shouldn't pay this off very quickly.
Computer Engineer.

If you think there isn't a reason that I shouldn't be able to pay this off quickly, then please share what I'd do. I can pretty much guarantee I'll do what I can to pay this off quickly, if I can pay this off quickly.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:08 PM
 
Location: Somewhere out there.
2,291 posts, read 3,834,297 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greatfire View Post
Alright,

I'm about to graduate with about 100K of student loan debt. I imagine this would be typical if I were a med student or something, but I'm an engineer. Anyway, I am well aware that it was really silly of me to take on this much debt throughout my undergrad career, but I can't go back and change that now, all I can do is try to make it through this in one piece.

My question is, do you have any advice on how to pay this debt down quickly? Like, are there any ways to consolidate to get an APR less than this horrendous 8% that I've had for the last two years of college? Are there agencies that can help me? Anything like that?

I appreciate any advice you have.
Live in a cheap studio (better yet, get a roommate), eat ramen noodles, ditch your car, live without cable, no cell phone either, shop at 2nd hand stores for clothes, cut coupons, no Starbucks, beg for money... I don't think there is an easy way to pay off your debt as quickly as you'd like unless you go hardcore into cutting expenses and maximizing your income. If I were you, I'd get a second job on top of the engineering job - at least for a few years to get the debt to a reasonable level.
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Old 10-07-2007, 11:21 PM
 
Location: in drifts of snow wherever you go
2,522 posts, read 30,599 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mommabear2 View Post
Live in a cheap studio (better yet, get a roommate), eat ramen noodles, ditch your car, live without cable, no cell phone either, shop at 2nd hand stores for clothes, cut coupons, no Starbucks, beg for money... I don't think there is an easy way to pay off your debt as quickly as you'd like unless you go hardcore into cutting expenses and maximizing your income. If I were you, I'd get a second job on top of the engineering job - at least for a few years to get the debt to a reasonable level.
Mommabear is right. There is no easy way to pay it off quickly. It might be a good idea to just tough it out for a few years to get it down to a reasonable level. I'm trying to pay off the last of my student loan too. I'd recommend you start writing down every penny you spend and work on putting together a good budget. You can pay this off, but it's going to take some determination.

I found a good Excel template that I'm using to track all my expenses. If you're interested, PM me with your email address and I'll send it to you.

Greenie
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Old 10-08-2007, 07:30 AM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
7,103 posts, read 10,448,568 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greatfire View Post
Computer Engineer.

If you think there isn't a reason that I shouldn't be able to pay this off quickly, then please share what I'd do. I can pretty much guarantee I'll do what I can to pay this off quickly, if I can pay this off quickly.
Do you have a job lined up and know how much salary you will be making in your area? And what's your definition of "quickly"?

Let's say you land a job paying $60,000/year (no idea how much new CE grads make?). Even if you put 1/3 of your take home pay of $40,000 or so toward your loan repayment, that's only $13,000 a year toward your loan, paying down the principle in addition to your scheduled payments. Even without interest, that's over 8 years. Assume you will have at least some interest, even while paying down principle, and you're talking 9 - 10 years.
Is 8 - 10 years quick enough? That's what I'd do is set aside 1/3 of your income and pay down your debt as fast as possible.
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Old 10-08-2007, 07:58 AM
 
1,773 posts, read 5,081,490 times
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I'd focus on lining up a lucrative job, setting myself up to live on minimal expenses, and then pay down the debt as quickly as I can. If possible I'd move in with family and expect to live with them a few years while putting all the saved money towards the educational loans. At some point, either at the beginning of the process (after landing your first job) or perhaps after paying off a significant portion of the loan (come up with a percentage, like 50%), I'd consolidate the debt under different terms. The shorter the term the less interest you'll be stuck paying every month... but the harder it will be to meet the monthly payments if you become unemployed. Also you need to aim for less interest anyway as 8% is pretty steep.

From experience, I prefer to suffer high monthly payments if it means I pay off my loan earlier while a more significant portion of the money I pay goes to principal. I did this for my mortgage and I am thankful for it because I'll be done paying for my home in just a few more years while most of my peers will be looking at 20+ more years of payments for their own primary residences.
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Old 10-08-2007, 08:02 AM
 
36 posts, read 114,822 times
Reputation: 39
I'd try to get a job that pays off some of the debt. Back when I was in the Army, it was paying up to $60,000 off in student loans for people who went enlisted for four years. The federal gov't also pays off a certain portion of student loans of its new hires depending and they are always looking for engineers.
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