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How many years will it take me to pay off my college debt? In a perfect scenario, enter the workforce with a bachelors in accounting?#collegedebt

I am curious on average how long does it take to pay off college debt? Will this hinder other financial situations. #collegedebt #financial-planning #college-advice


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Simona’s Answer

Hi Naomi,
Tracey has a good point. Part of the equation in how long it will take depends on your loan amount. The other part of that equation is your interest rate and your monthly loan payment. Both also need to be taken into account when calculating how long it will take to pay off your loans. There are many loan calculators out there that you can plug in your information to get an accurate answer on this. See the link I have added. You can also calculate whether to consolidate your loans here: https://studentloanhero.com/calculators/. Know that you have some options for consolidating, that will lower your interest rate and you end up paying less in interest. It is always best to pay more than the monthly payment (to go to principal), even if it is only as much as $5.00 per month. The website will also give you access to information such as loan forgiveness.

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Luke’s Answer

Hi Naomi,


This is an important question as it shows you're thinking to the future and how to alleviate some of the stress that comes after college. While I'm not aware of your situation (amount of debt, whether you've graduated or are soon entering college, etc.) but my answer will likely be the same. As mentioned by Simona, it's important to be aware of what types of debt you have and specifically the interest rate associated with each loan. Also, some colleges/loan programs enable the student to have a 6-month grace period after graduating from college which is a short period where loans do not accrue any interest. This allows for you to save and chip away at the debt prior to it growing, specifically targeting the higher interest loans as they should be prioritized in paying off. If savings is not enough to pay off loans prior to graduation, allocating a portion of your paycheck and budgeting your lifestyle around prioritizing the loan payoff should enable you to chip away at the debt. As an example, choosing less expensive housing and food options over time will yield more savings and the ability to pay more to reduce your debt quicker.


Having graduated 2 years ago myself, I had approximately $30k debt. I utilized the 6-month grace period and made no payments, then just before the period ended I paid approximately $15k off (combination of about 80% of personal savings) and left myself with comfortable room to ensure my living expenses/needs could still be met as I continued to earn money with work. When making this large payout, I ensured that the larger loans (5-6%) were paid off first and the lower interest loans (3-4%) remained. I continued to meet the minimum payments, and within a couple years the debt is now very manageable. My firm also pays $100 a month to all employees, so that more than covers my minimum payment so I will allow for the firm to assist as long as possible.


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Tracey’s Answer

Hi Naomi,

Great question. This depends on the amount of students loans you take out per year of study. Lets say you owe under 20K in college debt, that can be paid off in a decent amount of time. If you owe above 30k then it may take a bit longer depending if you have other financial responsibilities (ie. rent, mortgage, car loan etc). Numbers vary. which mean pay off varies. College Debt is common and something that should not deter you from getting an education. Student loan programs have many options for repayment that will not hinder your overall financial situation (i.e. Car and Home Loans etc.)


Best of luck.

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Rachel’s Answer

This depends greatly on how much you spend for the accounting degree (private vs. state school) and what kind of lifestyle you choose to have after leaving college. If you can live simply and keep your expenses down, most people try to pay off college loans within 10 years of graduating.

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Richard’s Answer


If you can keep your expenses down (live with parents, attend community college which can be free in some cities, complete your degree at an inexpensive public institution etc) debt doesn't have to be out of control. However the typical student does not do everything they can to decrease expenses then has to be stressed during their first years of practice.

Another unfortunate consequence of debt is limiting the student's choices after graduation. If a student has a passion for a low paying profession, but crippling debt, they may be forced to apply to jobs with higher future earning potential.

But typically you are looking at 10-15 years to pay back your student debt.


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