23. It’s not just the number on the back of NBA superstars LeBron James’ and Michael Jordan’s jerseys, it’s also the number of songs which talk about student loan debt, according to MSN.com. If you are among the 74% or so of all New Hampshire college graduates who have student loan debt and are wondering how to manage it, here are five quick tips and resources to get you started!
- If you have federal student loans, your lender is (surprise!) the federal government. Your loans will be serviced by one of nine federal student loan servicers. The primary responsibility of these servicers is to help you successfully manage repaying your student loans and answering any questions you may have. Check out this short video outlining the general process for repaying your federal student loans here.
- Are you having trouble making your federal student loan payment? There are many short- and long-term solutions available, depending on when your loans were taken out and on the situation. Use this handy widget to perhaps find a repayment option that may be appropriate for you – and then talk with your servicer about your next steps.
- Many New Hampshire residents also have private student loan debt. Private student loans are originated by banks, credit unions, state-based agencies, or nonprofit organizations. These loans will have different loan servicers and repayment options than federal student loans. If you are unsure if you have private student loans – or who your private student loan lender is, check with your college’s financial aid office. Or, grab a free copy of your credit report at annualcreditreport.com and look for your lender information there!
- Remember to ask your loan servicer(s) about what options are available to you to help manage your account. Ask about account management and the ability to make payments online. Ask if there is an interest rate reduction available if you utilize an auto-debit process to make payments. If you are having trouble making payments, talk with your servicer(s) as soon as possible about such short-term options as deferment and/or forbearance. Possible longer term solutions like refinancing your loans or changing repayment plans based on your income may also be appropriate.
- Speaking of credit reports, did you know how well you repay all of your student loans impacts your credit history and FICO score? Learn more about how well you manage your student loan repayment affects your overall creditworthiness from the National Federation of Credit Counseling (NFCC).
So, while 23 songs may elude to the daunting challenge of student loan debt, like ABBA…
“I work all night, I work all day, to pay the bills I have to pay
Ain’t it sad?
And still there never seems to be a single penny left for me
That’s too bad”.
(Money, Money, Money – Writers : Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus)
… we know there’s really only one song you want to sing. British artist Wiley sang,
“All I really want is money in my pocket
Cash in my hand, oh, skrilla in my wallet
All I really want is money in my pocket
Cash in my hand and skrilla in my wallet, yeah”.
(Cash In My Pocket – Copyright: Writers : Mark Ronson, Richard Kylea Cowie, Daniel Paul Merriweather)
About the Author
Living the “stay-work-play” mantra, Tori Berube has lived, worked, and played in New Hampshire all her life. While she currently lives in Manchester, Tori grew up in Concord and now works less than a half a mile from her childhood home at the The NHHEAF Network, a nonprofit agency that helps the state’s residents plan and pay for college. When not at work, you will find her out biking, hiking, snowshoeing, and sitting on the beach in North Hampton or at her family’s camp in Warner reading a good book and checking out cool podcasts. Follow Tori on Twitter at @toriberube and the Organizations, also on Twitter, at @nhheaf.