Newly-minted graduates are probably on cloud nine after they finish college. That is, until they receive their very first payment voucher for their loans. I remember the day when I picked up that dreadful Sallie Mae envelop from the mail box. I immediately did the math. If I paid the requested amount every month, it would take 12 years to pay off my loan.
I had no intention of making payments for over a decade, so I devised a plan that would have them paid off in half the time.
Here are five tips that will vanish your debt in no time:
Live like you did in college: Chances are, you lived on next to nothing in college. Keep that same mentality for the next year or so. When you find that your disposable income increases, you can put that money towards your monthly payment.
Keep driving that piece of junk: A lot of graduates want to reward themselves by purchasing a new car on credit. However, if your college car is still running, continue driving it. The last thing you need is another monthly expense, so avoid a car payment if possible. Instead, use that money towards those loans.
Make more than one payment during a billing period: If you get paid every two weeks, use both pay periods to make a payment. Whether it be paying the full amount twice a month, or half that amount, every bit helps.
Push for a larger salary: Your employer will make an offer, and often new graduates get so excited about their potential new job that they except whatever compensation is put in front of them. However, you can use that new degree as leverage to get better pay. Some companies will take advantage of the fact that you’re inexperienced and may try to pay you as little as possible. So, negotiate if your first offer is unfair. Remember, you’ve got student loans to pay off, so don’t accept a salary that will make it hard for you to make ends meet.
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