Do you have student loan debt that you’re hoping to get rid of soon?
If so, you’re not alone. In fact, nearly 45 million Americans have student loan debt, with the total amount of student loan debt reaching nearly $1.5 trillion.
Luckily, there are things you can do to get rid of your debt.
Check out this guide to learn how to manage student loan debt like a pro.
1. Consider Consolidating Your Loans
Consolidating your loans is one of the best ways to get your debt under control.
With debt consolidation, you combine all of your loans into one master loan. This way, instead of worrying about a bunch of different monthly payments and varying interest rates, you only need to worry about one monthly payment and one interest rate.
Consolidation also typically lengthens your loan payoff period. While this gives you more time to pay off your debt, it also means you’ll have more interest payments.
Also, keep in mind that if you consolidate your loans, you may end up with a higher interest rate than you had in the first place.
2. Tackle the Highest Loan First
When tackling your student loan debt, it’s always best to start off the loans with the highest interest rate.
We suggest budgeting a certain amount of money each month that’s slightly above your total monthly required payments. Then, you can allocate the extra money you have each month to the loan with the highest interest rate.
Once the loan with the highest interest rate is paid off, then you move onto the loan with the second-highest interest rate.
3. Set Up Auto Payments
Setting up auto payments is the best way to ensure that you don’t have to deal with late fees.
Additionally, some loan lenders offer discounts on interest rates if you agree to set up automatic payments to be withdrawn from your checking account each month.
You can also check out this Debthunch offer to learn more about getting loan discounts.
4. Look Into Loan Forgiveness
In some circumstances, you may be able to apply for loan forgiveness.
Loan forgiveness is available to students who attended schools that closed before they finished their degree. It’s also available to those with certain disabilities that don’t allow them to work.
Additionally, teachers and public service workers can also apply for loan forgiveness after working for a certain number of years.
5. Defer Payments
If you’re just graduating school and you’re not yet employed, you can also look into deferring your student loan payments.
Remember- deferring isn’t the same as loan forgiveness- you’ll still need to pay off your loans eventually. However, loan deferment gives you some time to get your ducks in a row before you begin payments.
Are You Ready to Manage Student Loan Debt?
Now that you know how to manage student loan debt, it’s time to put these tips into action. Before you know it, your debt will be under control.
Be sure to check back in with our blog for more financial tips and tricks.