Many Millennials are currently living with student loan debt. Minimum payment amounts can be tough to meet, let alone sending in extra payments. Is there an easier way? Unfortunately, debt is debt. However, here are a few survival tips when trying to find student loan debt relief.
Living With Student Loan Debt Survival Guide
Recently, my husband and I paid off the last bit of my student education loans! It was an amazing feeling. While I don’t regret taking on those loans, it did make life challenging at times. Meanwhile, I remembered some of the ways I managed repayment as a single person and in my marriage.
15 Tips for Repayment & Living With Student Loan Debt
Living with student loan debt can be hard, but not impossible. Consider a few of these tips to get through it.
- Use the Debt Snowball or Debt Avalanche method to have a clear strategy.
- Get a part-time job to speed up repayment.
- Research repayment methods. You may qualify for a different repayment strategy that lowers your monthly payments.
- Consolidate your loans so repayment is simpler and more manageable.
- Ask for a deferment or forbearance if you experience unemployment, deployment or another unexpected life event. The best thing to do is talk with your creditors quickly when something major comes up in your life that interrupts repayment- you do not want defaulted student loans.
- Talk about you and your spouse/partner tackling debt together. This will make repayment faster, feel less daunting if you feel that you aren’t alone in the struggle.
- Save money on everyday things: avoid buying paper towels, skip Starbucks, pack your lunches, make simpler dinners like rice and beans more often.
- Skip most of the bigger travel plans and big purchases for a while.
- Next, decline invitations to weddings or showers that will cost too much.. Send a card and a reasonable gift if you can afford it; perhaps delay the gift until their first anniversary.
- Become a one car household. This saves a ton of money through car maintenance and insurance. Plus, you get the money from the sale to apply directly to your loans.
- Use an all cash budget. Or you can choose a few budget categories that you tend to overspend. We always struggle with groceries. However, the times we use cash, we stay on track!
- Check thrift stores and garage sales for things you need before buying new.
- Make a really, really, really good budget, and include everything you can. Once you start properly allocating your money, you wont have as many surprise expenses.
- Send in extra payments from work bonuses, tax refunds, birthday money and more.
- Finally, have some fun! You can’t give all your money to loans. Splurging a little is a great way to relieve some stress and feel in control. For example, take a day trip instead of a long weekend.