Welcome to part 5 of Your Guide to Responsible Borrowing. Today, we’re looking at ways to take control of your future.
When we last left off, we were discussing how to how you can maximize the benefit of an education while minimizing your long term debt. Here are some more tips:
Borrow only what you need
Do not borrow more than you need and always look at student loans as your last resort for funding.
- Can you cover some expenses with a part-time job?
- Have you researched and applied for grants and scholarships?
- Do not take stipends, as these are usually generated by loan monies that must be paid back.
Reduce School Costs
- Cut down expenses while you are in school. Remember you are investing in your future, so to skip that once a week movie or that daily cup of coffee at Starbucks is well worth it when you consider the impact it will have on your future.
- Little things like cooking meals at home versus eating out, carpooling or using public transportation can cut your monthly household expenses and give you the means to insure that you can make a comfortable monthly contribution to your education.
- If you have to buy books, get creative! Though most of your books are available in your classroom, there may come a time when you have to buy a book. New textbooks can be hundreds of dollars each, so finding used books, renting or sharing books is a great way to put money back in your pocket.