Seven Tips to Handle Student Debt the Right Way

The prospect of a college education is something that most people now dread. Not only is it nearly impossible to land a good job without a degree, college tuition also necessitates taking out student loans. While student loans are now a very unfortunate fact of life—that does not mean that it is something that you have to live with forever.

Student debt is something that you can stay on top of! Here are a few tied and tested tips on how to handle your student debt the right way:

Fully Research Your Loan

The key to knowing how to handle is by fully understanding the loan that you got. Ideally, you do this before you take out the loan. However, if that ship has sailed, it’s still not too late to really get to know it. It is crucial that you find out the:

Lender

If you don’t know who your lender is, it’s important to know about them now. You need to determine if your loan is non-federal or other forms. Doing so will enable you to narrow down your options and the issues that you should concern yourself about.

Terms

If you didn’t read this part previously, it is important to do so now. Finding out the terms can help you out down the line. There will be guidelines there on what you can do to stretch out payment periods or you can even find out your grace period—if you have one. Not all student loans are allowed a grace period after graduation.

Balance

When you’re borrowing money, it’s important to know how much you’re going to pay back eventually. It’s not something to shelve and only think about when graduation is looming. Knowing the balance will also open up the way to finding out your interest rates.

Utilize Student Debt Tools

There are a lot of tools that you can make use of! Here are some of them:

Loan Calculator

Student loan calculators come in various forms now. They can come in apps and it’s something that’s fairly available online as well. Online calculators can help you keep track of your progress (or lack thereof). You can use a loan calculator to see how long it will realistically take you to pay off your loan basing it off on critical things like your balance or interest rates.

There are several forms of loan calculators that you can choose from as well. You can check the official website of the Department of Education to use their Estimator. If your loan isn’t a federal one, you can check out the website of your lender. Chances are, they’ll have their own version of the loan calculator.

Loan Hero

Otherwise known as the “Student Loan Hero” this free to use profile keeps track of all your loan concerns. You can sign up and keep all your loan information in one place—pretty handy if you’ve gone more than one loan running. It will keep you updated on when a payment is due and how much it’ll be depending on the date that you input.

Loan Hero also has a pretty significant resource pool for additional tips, tricks, and information that’s relevant to anyone dealing with a student loan.

Don’t Ignore Your Debt

This is the number one root of most, if not all, student debt problems. A lot of students—freshmen usually—tend to feel easy about the debt as its something that won’t be pressing until a few years from now. However, if you’re smart about it, you can knock off a significant amount of your debt by starting off on the interest payments while you’re still in school.

Instead spending your time ignoring something that’s not going to go away magically, consider using the resource you have while in school to better deal with your student loan in the future.

Never Lose Contact with Your Lender

One thing that’s important is to keep all your information current. If you find yourself changing addresses or contact numbers, it is important that you let your lender know at the soonest possible opportunity. This will show them that you’re acting in good faith and have no plans defaulting on your debt.

If they ever send you any emails, don’t ignore those. You never know if any of those contained any updates or special deals that you can take advantage of.

Avoid Debt Relief Services as Much as You Can

There are a lot of firms that pop up all over the country that offer reduced premiums or bartered down interest rates. They often charge exorbitant services fees for information that you can find yourself if you actually bothered to.

There are also a unscrupulous scam companies that imply or outright light about their capabilities regarding your debt. The worst that they do is to take your monthly payments and keep them without ever having contacted your lender to begin with.

While there are debt relief companies that are above board, you’re ultimately better off getting finance literacy discussions with trusted financial advisors.

Make Use of an Auto-Debit Deal with Your Bank

Auto-debit is pretty much like an automatic transfer for savings. Only this one has your money going straight to your lender. It’s pretty handy since with it in place, the chances of you missing a payment are pretty much slim.

Also, there are more and more lending institutions that provide a discount on the principal or interest if payments are made through auto-debit. Not only will you not have to worry about handling the payment processes personally but you’ll never have to worry about accidentally spending your loan repayment money on something else. Out of sight, out of mind works!

Try to Pay More than the Necessary Monthly Amount

Doing this can help to lessen the amount of the interest over the entire duration of the payment period! What’s important is that you let your lender know that you’ve made payments that are larger on purpose otherwise they might be credited for next month’s bill mistakenly.

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Why You Need To Repair Your Bad Credit

fixing bad credit quickly

Credit is the trust that allows one party to provide goods, money or other resources to another party who will then reimburse the first party at a later date. It is all fun until one fails to meet the repayment terms and it degenerates into a cycle of bad credit.

There is debate the world over on the need for credit, and a good credit rating, in the first place. As is common with many things, there are good and bad sides of getting credit, with a good rating to match, to fuel your expenses.

Causes of bad credit

A bad credit rating can cause one to be refused as a customer due to their high-risk nature. Some bad behavior’ in managing finances and credit cause one to have bad credit ratings. They include:

  •  Failure to stick to initial credit agreements; late credit card or loan repayments, failure to make the scheduled repayments.
  •  Bankruptcy; financial institutions will shy off from dealing with you.
  •  Minimum payments on credit cards; financial institutions will assume you are struggling to clear the debts.
  •  High levels of existing debts.
  •  Mistakes on your credit report; bad reviews when it does not apply to you

Ways of improving credit scores

Several factors of a credit card count in affecting your credit score; payment history (35%), credit utilization (30%), length of credit history (15%), types of accounts in use (10%), and new credit (10%). There are several ways that one with a bad credit rating can do a credit repair:

  •  Pay your bills in full each month; settle all the credit card debt each month to be free of outstanding debt.
  •  Use the credit cards for routine purchases; routine purchases like getting fuel and buying stuff at the departmental store can be done by using the credit card. Make it a routine and make sure to settle the bills at the end of the month.
  •  Make arrangements early enough to alter the repayment terms to a level you can afford.
  •  Try larger, long terms debts as they give great credit scores than the small, short terms loans with less interest. Higher and long terms debts motivate the financial institutions as they know they will earn more on interest, consequently increasing your credit rating.
  •  Urge to be told the reasons why you have been refused credit then work to improve on it.

Importance of credit rating repair

Much good accrue after a credit rating repair. They include:

Better rental terms; a good credit rating offers you the privilege of paying less on deposits on rents, mostly on the higher end housing. Landlords do a credit rating check on the potential tenants and form their decision based on this. A bad credit rating means a higher deposit requirement to curb defaults.

A good rating helps to get employment; many employers run credit checks on potential employees and also require them to submit proof of servicing their current debts. A good credit rating helps one gain employment as compared to those with bad credit rating who are considered risky for the job.

With a good credit rating, you can afford better insurance rates; insurance companies rely on the credit scores of their customers to fix their premium rates. The higher the credit scores, the better your insurance premiums on auto, homeowners and life insurance. Those with poor credit scores get to pay higher premiums as they are considered riskier.

Good credit rating lowers the interest rates to be paid on credit; a good credit rating earns one the privilege of paying less interest on loans and other forms of credit. A bad credit score, on the other hand, makes one have higher interest rates fixed on their loans and other forms of credit hence being expensive in the long run.

It also reflects a healthy financial reputation. This serves to improve the credit scores of an individual and also a firm, hence getting loans should be much easier.

There is a better chance for credit card and loan approval with a good credit rating.

It will be easy to get approved for higher limits with a good credit rating.

Mistakes you should avoid when starting new business

Business, as they say, makes you your own boss. While this is true, most people tend to often make mistakes especially when they are starting a new business. Mistakes which sometimes proves to be costly yet it could have been avoided. Well, if you intend to start a business, here are some of the common mistakes that you can avoid.

Not doing your homework/research

Before you start your business, it is important that you carry out research to establish whether there is a market for your product or service. If you don’t have the experience and skill to conduct the research, then you should consider engaging the services of a research company. In your research, you should strive to understand your potential customers and their money spending habits.

Underestimating/ignoring your competitor

Unless you are inventing a new service or product, you will always have a competitor. To be successful you will have to keep a close eye on your opponent. Get to know what they are doing and what their weaknesses and strengths are. You should then capitalize on their weakness and offer a better service or product to your customers. Good customer relations will go a long way in ensuring you stay ahead of your competitor.

Failing to market your product

One major mistake that most small and medium enterprises commit is their reluctance to market their product and/or services. Most owners of small businesses believe that they only need to open their shops and customers will come trickling in. Well, this is not true. For your business to attract many customers, you will have to market it. This, therefore, means that you will need to come up with a marketing strategy.

It is also advisable that you start your marketing early (even before you start your business) as this will not only win you some customers but will also help you to understand what your customers’ needs are.

Trying to go it alone

Even though you are independent; your own boss, you should not run your business alone. You will need advice and support from other people. These people may include close family members or even accomplished business men.

Trying to do everything

Another mistake that most business owners do, is trying to do everything without seeking assistance or delegating responsibilities to others. By doing this, they end-up forgetting or committing mistakes that they could have avoided if they had shared some of the tasks. For example, if you find it difficult to do bookkeeping you should hire a bookkeeper to do this task for you. This way, you will achieve success faster as you will be focusing more on what is important to the growth of your business

In conclusion, these are some of the common mistakes that can be avoided. It is important to have a mentor who will help you avoid some of these mistakes

Economical Plumbing

pic 1Out of our busy daily schedules, the last thing on our minds is probably our concern for our plumbing systems. Plumbing troubles at home are inevitable no matter how much we try to practical measures to prevent them from occurring. People often assume that little drips will stop on their own, but most get worse. And when water seeps into your walls or damages your floors, the repair can run up to several thousand dollars.

Plumbing is a major cost to homeowners. This is true whether you are undergoing construction or simply looking for ways to reduce your monthly utility bills. Knowing a few simple things about plumbing and keeping your drains and disposals in good shape can help prevent the need for expensive plumbing repair or emergency plumbing down the road. One Sydney plumbing company gave us some inside tips to reduce the costs of plumbing repairs and maintenance.

Like any aspect of construction, if you understand as much as possible about the plumbing fixtures, processes, and procedures, you will be able to make more intelligent decisions during the construction process. The internet is full of free articles, eBooks, and videos on plumbing repairs and installation and educating yourself should be the first step in the process of a more economical plumbing system.

“We have some of the most advanced plumbing systems in the world here in Sydney.” – Jack Jones, Sydney Plumber Co.

The prevention and maintenance aspect of your plumbing can easily be overlooked. Little problems if left unattended can turn into a huge nightmare coupled with bloated expenses. If you see a tap dripping, no matter how small it is, take necessary actions to fix the trouble. You can change the washer or cartridge yourself. If however, you are not confident in doing the job yourself, call for some help.

Prevention can be accomplished by doing some regular maintenance on your plumbing.  Doing a monthly inspection of your home’s plumbing – looking for drips, leaks, cracks, slow drains, water pressure, and temperature problems and getting them fixed when they are first noticed will prevent small problems from becoming large problems and save you a lot of money.

Sometimes the problem with a particular fixture is an easy fix such as replacing a washer or small part. But once a fixture reaches a certain age and starts to have problems it may need to be replaced or you will find that your calling for repairs a lot more often then you should. Check all of your plumbing fixtures including faucets, showerheads, toilets, water-heater, and taps.

In plumbing, there are some jobs you can do and some jobs that you cannot do. Understanding the difference between these two types of jobs will save you more money than anything else. Paying someone a professional wage to do a job that you could’ve done with a $10 part is a perfect example of spending too much money on plumbing. Alternatively, attempting a do-it-yourself project and causing damage to your home, or making an issue out of something that could’ve been fixed easily by a pro is equally as costly.

To learn more about plumbing or Sydney Plumber Co visit their website here.

 

Ways to Pay Off Your Student Loans in One Year

Every year millions of college graduates year are up to their ears in debt student loan. Today, it is easier for children to go to school than it was decades ago, but the huge bill after graduation may come as a shock. However, if you pay off your loan quickly, you can save thousands of dollars in interest and improve the way you live.

Possible ways to pay loan

Join AmeriCorps or Teach for America.

According to Kiplinger, if you join any AmeriCorps or Teach for America, you will be eligible for specific grants to help you pay off your loans faster. The scholarships may even settle claims for you completely, depending on how much money you owe.

Teach in a low-income school.

According to Kiplinger, teaching in these schools can benefit your loan for forgiveness. To find low-income schools, look for the Low Income Directory Teacher cancellation.

Join the military.

According to FinAid, if a student joins Army National Guard, you may be eligible for a Student Loan Repayment Program. The program will take a student up to $ 10,000 to pay off student loans.

Join the public interest or nonprofit positions.

According to FinAid, law schools forgive loans if students work in the public interest or nonprofit. For more information, contact the National Association of Public Law, also known as Equal Justice Works

Take out a home equity line of credit.

Go to the mortgage lender to discuss using your home for a line of credit. According to MSNBC, you can use a home equity line of credit to pay off loans faster because you can get a much lower interest rate but variable.

The savings in interest will allow you to put more money in the principal amount of the loan (the amount of money borrowed excluding interest), thereby making it easier for you to repay the loan faster. Of course, to do this, you will need to own a home. However, if your parents have a house, they can take the credit line, and you can just pay each month what you owe.

Pay more than the minimum payment.

Each month, pay more than the minimum amount due on the loan. If you pay more than the minimum you will decrease the amount of time it will take to pay off your loan. Sometimes the decreased time can be very dramatic, especially if their loans have a high interest rate.

Achieving goals is much easier – and more fun! – If you work with a reward in mind. Despite being debt free is certainly a reward of its own, planning to travel or even treat yourself to a good meal is the best way to help you pay off your loans faster.