Most recent college graduates are dreading November because that is when their first student loan payment is due. The six month grace period after graduation provided by most federal loans is aimed at allowing borrowers time to find employment before their payments are due. Unfortunately, this often is not sufficient time and graduates have to live frugally and start saving during this period in order to manage the extra payment.
Preparing to Repay Loans
Below are a few tips to help you prepare for making and managing the repayment of your student loans:
- If you have multiple student loans, make sure you understand the types of loans you have and when your first payments are due. Mark each due date on your calendar because it is common for borrowers to miss their very first payment because they didn’t receive a statement or notice it was due.
- If your contact information changes, it is important to update it with your lender. You don’t want to miss any important notices regarding your student loans.
- Make sure you allow time for processing by the lender because your payment may not post the same day it is received.
- Always confirm that your payments are properly credited. Student loans can be transferred between servicers, so you do not want to incur penalties or fees resulting from processing errors.
- If you discover any errors regarding your payments, contact the lender or servicer immediately. Keep a file of any evidence you have regarding your payments or communications regarding your student loans.
- If you are considering consolidating your student loans, it is wise to seek legal help. There are many factors to be considered and negotiated to ensure that the consolidation is beneficial to you. It also helps you avoid the numerous scam artists that prey on graduates seeking to consolidate their loans.
- Start setting money aside to cover your student loan payments if an emergency should arise. If you start encountering problems paying your student loans, let us help you explore your options.
Don’t think you have plenty of time to prepare to pay your student loans. Six months goes by quickly, so it is important to get started now. However, if your student loans are coming due and you are unable to pay, you should consider seeking a deferment or forbearance from your lender.
When you defer payment of your student loan, it means that you are postponing payment of them. Deferment is only a temporary solution, but it can give you time to get your finances in order so you can pay your loan. It also keeps your student loan from going into default. To learn more about deferment, please read our blog titled “Understanding Student Loan Deferment.”
If you are unable to make your scheduled loan payments, but you are not eligible for a deferment, you may be able to obtain forbearance. When your loan is in forbearance, you may be allowed to stop making payments or make a reduced monthly payment. Additionally, forbearance prevents your loan from going into default status.
Please keep in mind that every matter is different. If you have questions about your student loan debt, and you would like to schedule a no-cost consultation to discuss your options, please contact our office by completing the form on this website or calling us at (954) 932-5377.