Federal student loans take this into account by offering payment plans determined by borrowers earnings. Student loan borrowers may agree to either fixed payments or payment plans that vary each month, which together mean that they can make payments without penalty for nine or ten years, depending on the plan. It’s important to understand that the fixed amount that the student loan servicer is offering may be higher than what you would normally pay for your education. The student loan servicer offers the same monthly payments plan to many borrowers, including recent graduates. So if you are a graduate, consider working with your school to negotiate for a different plan if the monthly payments of the fixed rate plan doesn’t suit you. (The fixed-rate plan should usually be between 5 and 7 percent, but you should be familiar with what youre signing up for if you don’t want to use the plan on the first day of each billing cycle.)
Think about financial aid
If you can’t afford to pay all the way to graduation, the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) program can help with student loan debt. Although the FFEL program is only available for low-income students, these loans are more manageable than private loans because they aren’t tied to employment and many borrowers qualify for some form of financial aid. Find out if your school has participated in the program, and if you qualify for aid from the Federal Family Education Loan program, you could also look on websites like SoFi to get further options.
Think about your goals
The reason you are graduating is not because you didnt work hard enough. And even if you worked hard enough to get into a four-year school, there are likely other programs available for you. Consider your financial needs, including your expected debt obligations, as well as the jobs you’re going to have to take. Using each of these criteria, take a look at each of the school’s programs and programs available to you.
Do you qualify for one of these programs? Explore and apply to different programs to see if they fit your needs and finances.
Take it slow
Theres nothing wrong with working hard. Just remember that there are many things that are more important than graduate school. Thats why its important to make the most of your time, even if you dont have a full-time job right away. For instance, there are many graduate positions available for students who have a bachelor’s degree in a related field and a solid work experience and credit history.
Student loan servicers usually tell borrowers when the time to make a payment is coming up. But before you get nervous, its important to remember that there are several reasons you cant pay your loan off before graduation. You may have a medical or disability, or you may have earned only a secondary degree and are struggling to find a job. More likely, your financial aid or loan consolidation application will be rejected, or the servicers incentive to meet their loan payments may have expired.