Student loans are a great way for many people to be able to afford to go to college. Once you are done with school and must begin paying off student loan debt, you may find yourself getting stressed out and struggling to make things work each month.
You are using credit cards for basic necessities
You are behind on any of your loan payments
You have zero savings and would not know what to do if there was an emergency financial situation
You are often paying late fees on your debts
You are making only the minimum payments for your debts
You are not alone. Perhaps you have been thinking of debt consolidation or going for credit counselling or even consulting a licensed insolvency trustee. There are a few steps you can take to start managing your debt-to-income ratio and change how you pay your debts. First, Do The Math Make a list of the terms of your loans. For instance, what is the interest rate on your student loans? Does it change or is it fixed? Is loan forgiveness available? What are the interest rates on your other loans? Add up your monthly income and your expenses, and you will see how much money you have toward savings or paying off loans faster. It is easier to stay focused if you create short and long term savings goals for yourself. Some money experts recommend maintaining the minimum payments on your lowest interest loans. You can make a list of your loans by interest rate and decide which to pay off first or you can consider your savings first and your loans secondary. For instance, a short term goal might be to establish an emergency savings fund. This would mean paying the minimum on your loans and putting any extra into savings until you had 2 or 3 months of daily living expenses saved. Your life line when you may need it. Be Comfortable With Your Choices When things seem overwhelming, there are resources you can use. D. & A. MacLeod proudly offers credit counselling in Kingston and the surrounding areas as well as debt consolidation and debtor assistance. Declaring bankruptcy is and should always be a last resort. We will work with you to find an amicable solution to your debt situation. If you cannot make heads or tails of your finances, please feel free to call us. We will be happy to advise and assist you in removing the stress of your finances so that you can enjoy your new status as a college or university graduate.