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Aug 05, 2016 04:20 AM EDT

Student Loans: 10 Ways To Minimize Student Loan Debt

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Student Loan Debt
Student Loan Debt
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Education is expensive. Moreover, the current student loan debt crisis has escalated to scary heights as some dread its effects on the economy.

Student loan debt can be minimized, though. Upcoming freshmen just need to be wise in dealing with this type of investment. U.S. News shared 10 steps on how students can minimize their debt.

  1. Calculate the total cost. Tuition is just one of the many expenses in college. Take note of books, housing, meals and transportation as well.
  2. Look for other funding sources. Loans should be your last resort. Try to apply for grants, scholarships and college savings plan. You can also deduct potential earnings from your expense calculation if you plan to take on a part-time job.
  3. Scrimp where you can. It's easy to budget for tuition and other school fees since they are already set. While an expensive apartment may provide you with the ultimate comfort, it is best to be frugal whenever possible.
  4. Borrow only what is needed. Remember, you'll be the one paying for your student loan debt. Watch out for any excess loans as well.
  5. Ask for financial advice. A lot of first-time college students make disastrous mistakes with their finance because they did not consult others first. Parents also need to discuss money management tips with their kids.
  6. Learn about payment terms. Students should know what their loans' repayment terms are as well as how much it will be.
  7. Know how much your future self should earn. After calculating for the expenses, figure out how you will repay your student loan debt by researching on how much your chosen career pays. Payscale has a list of average starting salaries for several degrees.
  8. Exhaust federal loans first. If these are not enough or unavailable, evaluate private loan offerings. Keep in mind the interest rates and repayment terms.
  9. Be aware and make the right decision. Borrowing money for your education should be a very good investment that's done with good research.
  10. Take note of your borrowing record. It's so easy for student loans to pile up over the years.

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