There are many pros and cons to student loans. For instance, your student loans will help you go to college to get the degree you want. The student loan will help pay for the degree, supplies, housing, books, and more. The downside of the loan is that you have to pay it back with interest. And the worst part is that even if you do not graduate, you are still responsible for the debt. Today, there are more than 40 million Americans battling the long term effects of student loan debt. Student loan have become such a huge issue in the United States, even the political candidates have started to talk about the $1 trillion problem.
If you are stuck in a rut and you are having trouble paying back your student loans, you can get student loan help. There are a few different places you can turn when you need help and there are options out there that fit almost every circumstance. If you do need student loan help, consider the following five ways you can find the help you need.
- Financial Counseling
Many students find that they are unable to pay their student debt off as easily as they had hoped when they graduate. It is important that you never skip your payments as this can lead to default, which will negatively affect your credit and can lead to wage garnishments. Also, when your loan is in default, you are unable to borrow any more money for your schooling.
If you are struggling to make your monthly payment, there are options out there for you. Speaking with a financial counselor can help. Your counselor will sit down with you and help you sort out your finances. He or she will be able to show you where you can save money, how you can reduce your debt, and more. You should ask your financial counselor about the different student loan consolidation options available. You will find that when you work with a counselor, you are able to pinpoint an option that works for you. Student loan consolidation is a way to reduce your monthly payment and the total cost of your educational debt.
- Repayment Plan
Working with your loan provider can open a number of doors for you. Not only will you avoid default, your loan provider can get you into the right repayment program.
There are quite a few repayment options. If you are given a repayment option and you cannot afford the monthly payment, call your provider and see if it can be reduced to something more affordable.
In addition, you may qualify for an income-based repayment plan. This type of repayment plan bases your monthly payment on how much money you make a year and how many people are in your family. If your payment works out to $0 per month, this still counts as a payment on your account.
- Loan Forgiveness Program
The loan forgiveness program is a nice option for many students and it provides you with additional options. Not all loans can be forgiven, but a couple that can include the teacher loan forgiveness program and the public service loan program.
Once you have made the required number of payments and met any other requirements, your loan will be forgiven.
- Forbearance Options
If you are struggling to pay your student loans, you may qualify for forbearance or deferment of the loan. During a forbearance or deferment, you may not have to pay on your loans for a certain amount of time.
This option will help you avoid going into default, but you must meet the requirements as well. Sometimes, if you do not meet the requirements to postpone your payments, you may receive a reduced monthly payment.
- Loan Discharge
A loan discharge can help students when it comes to their student loan debt, but not all loans can be discharged and unless you meet certain circumstances, you are responsible for paying your loan.
Some of the reasons why a loan may be discharged include bankruptcy, school closing, false certifications, and disability.
You will need to prove that you fit into one of these criteria before your loan is discharged. Once the loan is discharged, you are no longer responsible to pay it.
Student loan help is available for all students, but you must ask for it. There are many different options for you to explore and you are sure to find something that fits your budget. Don’t hesitate to ask for student loan help when you find that you are struggling financially.