18 Oct Discover Student Loan Repayment Strategies
With all the publicity surrounding the rush to file the 2017-18 FAFSA after October 1, one issue that might get overlooked in the college financial aid world is repaying student loans. Students who graduated in May should soon start seeing notices of payment due coming in their email or regular mail boxes. If you haven’t done so already, gather in-depth information on your outstanding student loans to determine exactly how much you owe, and what your anticipated monthly payments will be.
Federal student loans have a wide variety of repayment plans and strategies that you can consider. Some private student loan lenders, like Discover Student Loans for example, also offer a variety of repayment plans to help keep your financial train on the tracks. Here are some of the ways they can help make it easier to repay your student loans.
• Do some calculating: Use the convenient monthly payment calculator to determine exactly how much money you will need to pay each month. Use the prepayment calculator to determine how much money you might be able to save by making larger payments each month.
• Deferment options: You might be able to defer, or temporarily delay, making payments. You could qualify for a deferment if you are going to continue in school at least half-time, will be on active military duty, or are serving in a public service organization or medical residency. Remember that interest does continue to grow on the principal amount of your loan during the deferment period. You can pay this interest as it is incurred, or it can be added to your balance when payments resume.
• Repayment options: If you are not earning as much money as you originally anticipated, there are options which might make your monthly Discover Student Loan payments more affordable. The Early Repayment Assistance program provides a 3-month extension of your grace period. In the Reduced Payment program, your monthly payment is reduced to an amount which is approximately equal to your monthly interest, subject to a $50 minimum, for an initial period of six months. The Hardship program temporarily reduces the interest rate for six months to lower the Minimum Monthly Payment amount, subject to a $50 minimum.
If you didn’t borrow from Discover Student Loans, check directly with your lender to learn about their repayment options. Repaying student loans is the end of the college journey. If you’re just beginning the college journey, though, and would like more information on the early FAFSA or financial aid, schedule a free strategy session with College Financial Aid Advisors now!
Get more information on student loans in my book, Secrets of a Financial Aid Pro. It provides FAFSA insights, reviews the updated financial aid timeline, educates borrowers on taking out and repaying student loans, and talks about good money habits parents can instill in children as they are growing up. Order it now, so you can help your students successfully navigate the student loan portion of their financial life.