Graduating from college is a wonderful accomplishment. Unfortunately, after you finally get your hard-earned degree, you still aren't entirely free. Student debt plagues millions of college students across the globe. Experts estimate that 71% of four-year college students have any sum of debt in student loans, and 66% of those students have over $25,000 to pay off.
If you are in the midst of paying off your student loans, or you are doing all you can to pay them off early, here are some brilliant ideas to help you pay off your student loans quickly and early:
1. Pay off the smallest loan first
Most of the time, people focus on the loan with the highest interest rate, but the easiest way to begin your payback journey is by focusing on the lowest amount. Paying off your lowest loan will give you satisfaction and motivation to keep paying off the rest. Another benefit to paying off the lowest loan first is that opens up opportunities to put money toward more expensive payments in the future.
2. Use all of your extra cash
That $100 bill from grandma for your birthday, extra income from working over time, winning the lottery, or any money you may inherit should go toward your student loans. If you invest all your extra money into your student debt, those numbers will start dropping quickly.
3. Get involved in a money-making hobby
Surprisingly enough, there is an entire list of hobbies or activities you can do that can give your wallet extra bulk. Start a blog, become a freelance writer, teach lessons or a class or sell beauty products. If you put all of this extra cash toward your student loans, you will see a significant portion completely disappear.
4. Add your loans to your wedding registry
Your friends and family would love to help you start your new life with your spouse as comfortably and as enjoyable as possible. And the truth is, most of them have probably had experience with some form of debt and are more than willing to donate to your loan instead of giving you a brand new set of china.
There are wedding registrys you can create online that allow you to set up cash gifts for certain events, or in your case, your student loans. People love to help, and if they know their money is going to a good cause, they will be happy to donatie a few extra dollars in your behalf.
The government recognizes that student debt is a real problem for the vast majority of college students in the country. There are many programs that drop the remaining balance of your debt after 10 years of repayment and many other options as well (depending on your career field). There are a majority of programs and opportunities in loan forgiveness, so keep your eyes peeled.
6. Talk to your employer about Loan Repayment Assistance Programs
Many companies are taking the time to invest in Loan Repayment Assistance Programs for the employees that work there. Your occupation might already offer such a program without your knowledge. Take advantage of this opportunity in your current career or ask potential employers if they offer such a program.
7. Increase automatic payments
Making a monthly payment automatic takes time and concern off of your shoulders. Even if the payment starts low, you can further increase it as you move forward in your career. By making payments automatic, you can focus on the more important matters of your life and free yourself from worrying about interest and missed payments.
Lot of us have money-sucking vacuums in our lives that we tend to forget about from time to time. For example, eating out at restaurants. Although food is delicious, and eating out is convenient, eating meals at home and buying groceries will save you so much more money than you can count.
You can also consider cutting your cable and investing in a small payment for Netflix or Hulu instead. Look into your car insurance plan if you haven't been in any accidents for a few years, they may reward you with easy money. You can also sell extra books, clothes, or DVDs on Ebay or Amazon for some extra dough.
Whatever you choose to do, any of these easy options will free you from a life of spiraling interest rates and paying off your student loans will become nothing but a breeze.
Chakell Wardleigh has a Bachelor of Arts in English. She spends her days silently (mostly) correcting others' grammar. She adores all things nerd, such as Harry Potter, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Shakespeare, and anything else that whisks her away from reality. She currently works as an editor for the FamilyShare team. You can usually find her with her nose in a book, laughing too loudly, or belting out songs from Hamilton.