How Do You Manage The Student Loan Debt?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussions' started by jwthornhill, Mar 30, 2007.

  1. jwthornhill

    jwthornhill New Member

    I have a family of five right now at home (three teens ,plus me and my wife) and we decided that I would take a student for the program at Aspen U. I only owe around $2k on the loan but, even with two household incomes we are struggling to manage our finances sometimes.

    If you don't mind could you please share some of your methods or theories regarding student loan debt and how you feel about it?

  2. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    Hi JW - I know that what I'm about to say will make the financial experts clench their jaws and pull their hair but what I did was to roll my student loan debt into my home mortgage when I refinanced. I understand that by paying it off over a longer period I am actually paying more money but the problem I was having (and maybe you too) was that I had too many monthly payments to make and not enough income to cover them. I had consolidated my loans so that I was making just one payment per month but I was living in an apartment and so I was "throwing away" my rent money each month. When I crunched the numbers I realized that I could be making mortgage payments instead of (loan + rent) payments. Now I am living within my means, paying my bills without strain, living in my own home and the fact that I will be paying off my student loan over a longer period seems a small price for the decreased stress (and nice house). You may get better advice from someone else but that was my solution and so far it's working out well.
  3. jwthornhill

    jwthornhill New Member

    Actually that makes a lot of since when you factor in the ROI of the degree and/or certificate that you earn, according to some studies: The ROI for an MBA
  4. Rich Douglas

    Rich Douglas Well-Known Member

    I have a huge student loan, due mainly to my 7-or-so years as a Union learner. But it's fine; earning the degree helped quintuple my income and start my own business. This has reduced the student loan payments to simply something I must remember every month. Niiiiiiiiiiice.
  5. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator

    I guess this is not what you want but, I use tuition assistance from my job and pay the balance in cash. No loans-
  6. jwthornhill

    jwthornhill New Member

    Frankly, debt free would be the most preferable to me.
  7. Kizmet

    Kizmet Moderator

    Hi JW -

    "hmmm. which is better, debt free or big debt?"

    You must be one of those MBA students. LOL!
  8. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator

    I look at education as an investment. If you play your cards right, you can take on an adjunct position that will pay you back. I teach some classes on the side and made 16K last year. I will make about 30-40K this year depending on the course load I get. I paid about 4K out of pocket for all my education (that number changes depending on my mood :D ).

    I am considering a graduate certificate in accounting when I finish the UF program. It would cost me about 10K out of pocket but I would plan to make that back teaching.

    Don't look at the cost, look at the return you will get if you plan well.
  9. Randell1234

    Randell1234 Moderator

    Sorry - with the UF certificate ($2,400) the actual cost of my education out of pocket was about 6K.
  10. xgoddessx

    xgoddessx New Member

    speaking of "debt free" ...

    Could I ask you guys here about your thoughts on the eLearners Debt-Free College Guide?

    We have so many site visitors who want to know how to finance a college degree, so we created this state-by-state resource to help uncover some ways of offsetting the cost of education. Go to

    Thanks for your time!
  11. jwthornhill

    jwthornhill New Member

    This was exactly our thinking when I took out the student for Aspen. Its our hope that it will aid me to get a much more secure position.
  12. raristud2

    raristud2 New Member

    Full time job, online teaching, tax returns and a portfolio of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds may eliminate my student load debt in a few years. Once I pay off the loans, I'll reward myself and take a trip to the beautiful country of Sweden. :)
  13. PaulC

    PaulC Member

    I bet I could rival you.

    But frankly, I just don't get bothered over it. It has increased my income, my options, and my opportunities in ways that more than met my expectations.

    I make payments on cars that only lose value over time. School loans are probably one of the least bothersome things I make a payment for.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 14, 2007
  14. Pugman

    Pugman New Member


    Only slightly off topic but, have you ever read The richest man in Babylon?

    Good common-sense help regarding finances IMO (including student loans) and a quick read (< 2 hours).

    Just a thought...

  15. friendorfoe

    friendorfoe Active Member

    Personally I’m not going to sweat it, much. Here is a strategy…

    There are only 2 kinds of “good” debt and both are long term investments.

    First there is your house. Are you paying more than the purchase price by mortgaging? You bet your butt, however after about 10 years of living in that house, inflation, house values, your salary, etc. will make that payment that seemed barely manageable 10 years ago, easy and small, relatively speaking.

    The second “good” debt is student loans. If you don’t have to get one, then by all means DON’T, but if it is the ONLY way for you to go to school while you’ve still got the vinegar to do so, then do it. It will raise your earning potential, open doors for you and teach you things that you’ll use more often than your degree, such as communication, reading comprehension, etc. Oddly enough I use my education every day, but seldom use my degree.

    Once you have your degree, it is easy to get lazy, don’t. You have a debt to pay so you have 1 of 2 options. Either get a job that pays more and start hammering away at that student debt or work another job.

    Lastly the “strategy” I’ve presented only recognizes 2 good debts. So look around you and see if you have any debt that isn’t one of the two, such as car payments, credit cards, boats, jet skis, motorcycles, etc. If you have something that isn’t a “good” debt, pay it off first and don’t incur more debt. Cars are NOT an investment, necessary as they may be. I have a 1998 Nissan pickup that is a real beater, but it’s paid for. I may take some ribbing from my friends and co-workers as they drive about in their BMW’s or big Chevy trucks, but at the days end, my debt is for a degree that I will use to get a better paying job. They will most likely still be working the same job they have now hoping to get a fair deal on a trade in when the new car urge hits them when they’re upside down.

    Just a though/rant.

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