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What Should I Do With My Student Loan Once I Graduate?

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Question: What Should I Do With My Student Loan Once I Graduate?
Answer:

When you first graduate from college you may be wondering what to do with your student loan. It is important to begin thinking about paying back your student loan as soon as you graduate. Too many students are graduating in the red, and not addressing their debt right away. Your student loan payment should be part of the plan for transitioning between college and working. You should plan on paying this loan off as quickly as possible. You do not want to have your student loan for the years to come.

Take advantage of the exit student loan counseling that your college offers. This is required in most areas. It can give you valuable advice on how to cope with your student loan payments. It answers many basic questions about student loans and explains what will happen when you fail to make payments. Student loans will not be excused in a bankruptcy proceeding, so it is important that you work on paying them off as quickly as possible.

Most student loans offer a grace period of six months before you need to begin paying on them. This will allow you time to find a job before you have to make payments. Do not assume that you are automatically put into the grace period. You should contact your student loan company to make sure that you are in the grace period. You should receive a letter from the company stating that you have graduate and the date that your first payment is due. If you do not receive this letter within two months, contact your loan company.

Update your student loan company with your new address. This helps the student loan company inform you of any changes in your payment amount. Even if you have your student loan payment directly debited from your account, you need to make sure they have your current address. You should receive tax information at the end of each year, which can save you money.

Consider consolidating your student loans. This can lower your monthly payment, but more importantly it locks in your current interest rate. If you want to pay off your student loans at the same rate, then simply pay the amount that you would have before you consolidated your loans. You will save money by locking in a lower interest rate.

If you have difficulty making your student loan payments contact your student loan company. They can offer temporary or hardship deferments. This will help you to avoid late fees and other penalties. If you do this you can prevent a negative mark showing up on your credit report. The phone call is well worth your time.

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