With the rise of college tuition, a lot of students are worried about how to pay for school. Students are doing their best to get as many scholarships, grants, and loans as possible.
The question is should I take out student loans for college? The answer is yes if what you want to do in life requires a college education. If you want to get into a trade, then college would not be practical. You would need to go to a technical or trade school to get the skill set needed. Let’s say you want to be an engineer or doctor then your only option is college.
The first step to getting financial aid is filling out FAFSA. FAFSA is the free application for federal aid. Federal aid is aid that comes from the government through grants and loans. Once you have filled out FAFSA, there are many other ways to apply for scholarships.
You need to look for scholarships and you have to hunt to find them. Here are some ideas or places to find scholarships.
- MyScholly.com app that helps you find scholarships
- Companies you do business with for example my life insurance company offers $2,000 a year to student’s parents with an insurance policy
- Online searches
- Work may offer scholarships to employee’s children
- The college you are going to may offer academic and other scholarships
The possibility is endless you just must do the work and look for the scholarships.
Scholarships, Loans, and Grants
First, I feel that it is important to understand the difference between scholarships, loans, and grants.
A scholarship is an amount of money awarded for academics, athletics, or talents that do not need to be paid back.
A grant is an amount of money awarded usually off financial need or other things that do not need to be paid back.
A loan is an amount of money that does need to be paid back.
There are two main types of student loans:
- Subsidized loans
- Unsubsidized loans
Subsidized loans do NOT accrue interest while you are in school whereas unsubsidized loans do. This is the main difference that you really need to consider. Obviously, you want to try to get as many subsidized loans as you can because you will end up paying less due to not accruing interest.
Next, I’m going to talk a little bit about student loans and everything that goes along with them.
Can a Student Take Out a Loan for College?
Yes, a student can take out a loan for college. The reason that you should apply for a subsidized loan over a private loan is interest. A subsidized loan you will not accrue interest while you are at college. Private loans or unsubsidized loans do accrue interest while you are in school.
This will make a big difference in the amount of money that you will be paying in the end and your mindset while you are in school. If you don’t want to worry about money to get in the way of you getting your education go subsidized loans.
Your best bet is to go and research all the opportunities through FAFSA first. Then you’re going to want to look for any sort of student loan opportunities within your bank, banks in your area, and maybe even your county. There are many different student loan opportunities within the town that I live in when I applied.
You can also read about how to get a student loan if you have bad credit.
How Much Should I Take Out for Student Loans?
When it comes down to it, there is no “right” amount of student loans. If you need to go to college in order to obtain the degree that you need for your dream career, then going to college is a stepping stone to get to your dream.
You need to think of it in terms of a car loan. You decided to get a car based on need not because you must take out a loan. This should be your mindset when it comes to student loans. You must get your degree in order to have certain jobs, so this means you must have loans in order to have this job.
Some people will have to take out a lot more money than others. This is going to be up to each individual person and how much they are willing to have in debt when they come out of school.
Scholarships to Lower Your Loan Amount
There are several things that you can do to lower the amount of money that you have to take out in loans. The first thing that I can tell you to do is to apply to as many scholarships as you possibly can. The number of scholarship opportunities out there are is absurd.
There are literally scholarships for everything.
I got a scholarship simply because my dad is a firefighter. If you just put the time into research and fill out scholarship applications, I promise you that you will at least get one of them.
You also want to make sure that you were applying to all scholarships within your high school and the college that you are going to attend. I would also look for scholarships within your town, county, and the cities around you.
Do the best you can to make the number of loans you have to take out the smallest that you possibly can. There are some other options when it comes to lowering the cost of college.
You could always go to a community college for the first year or two to save on money and then transfer to your dream University.
Another option is to go to a college that has a lower cost for tuition then maybe your top choice. It is all up to you and what you were willing to do and sacrifice.
How Much are Student Loan Payments Per Month on Average?
The amount of student loan payments per month are going to differ depending on a few criteria:
- The total amount on your loan
- Are paying any interest during the time you were at school
- What is your interest rate?
- Another factor is going to be how much income you make per year after college
Let’s say that you make $47,000 per year. If you make this much money per year, you will probably be paying somewhere between $250 and $300 per month in student loans.
Overall in the United States, the average student loan borrower is going to pay almost $400 per month according to the federal reserve.
What is the Maximum Student Loan Amount for a Lifetime?
Most lifetime loan limits are somewhere around $140,000. A lot of this is going to differ depending on if you were going to just undergraduate school or if you’re going to go to graduate or professional school as well. It is also going to depend on if you got any subsidized loans and if you are still a dependent.
How Many Years are Student Loans?
The standard repayment on one student loan is going to be 10 years.
Private student loans vary and can go up to 15 to 20 years. Buyers can choose alternate ways that they can reduce the monthly loan payment and make this amount smaller.
How Long do You Have to Pay Back Student Loans?
Most student loans are going to have a six-month grace period after you graduate. This means that you won’t have to start making payments until six months after your graduation day.
This also happens if you are a dropout student or you are below half time status. It is supposed to give you an opportunity to find a job and start making money before you must pay on all your loans.
Overall, most of the time you have up to 30 years to repay your federal student loans. This is obviously going to depend on the company you borrowed from for your loans.
What is the Maximum Financial Aid You Can Get?
You can get the financial aid that is enough to pay for your entire cost of schooling. This is usually for people whose parents have very low incomes.
How Long Does it Take to Pay off $50,000 in Student Loans?
The average time that it takes to pay off $50,000 or less in student loans is 10 years. It normally will take 30 years to pay off a consolidation loan. However, the monthly amount is going to be adjusted for the size of your loan and the size of your income.
Overall, there are many ups and downs to getting student loans. As long as you put the time in research into which loans offer the best rates and terms. Remember, that it is up to each individual person how much to take out and how long they take to pay it off.
College is a necessity for many majors and careers nowadays, and even if it means taking out student loans it should pay off in the end. Don’t get discouraged about going to college just because of money and student loans.