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How to Deal with Your Student Debt

We get it; life after graduation is full of change, challenge and, for many new grads, a lot of student debt. That’s why we decided to make student debt the focus of our recent podcast episode. Here are a few tips and tricks for tackling your student debt load (including a few things not to do) from our panel of Licensed Insolvency Trustees (LITs).

Don’t forget about that debt

With a ton of decisions to make and the job search in full swing, tackling debt can slide to the bottom of the to-do list for many new graduates. Our LIT’s recommend prioritizing your debt as much as possible, as well as ensuring your finances are in good shape. It may not look very important right now, but dealing with your debt and making those payments will help you build a good credit score and help you with your other financial goals down the line.

Make a plan

Our LIT’s also recommended creating a plan when it comes to finding relief from the debt you owe. Without a plan, it can be really easy to lose track and get off course with your goals.

Your plan should be in alignment with your current circumstances. For example, if your budget is stretched a bit thin these days, it may not the right time to pay down more of your debt than required. At the very least, however, you’ll want to ensure you’re always paying the minimum amount each month so you can start to build a good credit history.

Seek help and learn

Learning more about your debt, including how the interest is calculated on your loan, is a great idea when it comes to finding debt relief. Online resources are also a helpful tool as they provide many great tips and tricks that will help to make repaying your loans a lot less stressful. For example, set up an automatic payment from your account to your debt, that way you are sure to never miss a payment and you won’t have to worry about damaging your credit. Use a debt payment calculator to help you figure out how much you should pay each month to avoid paying massive amounts of interest charges over time.

Use credit sparingly

When focused on debt relief, the last thing you want to do is add more to your current debt load, particularly if the debt is of the high-interest variety. Our LIT’s recommend using credit sparingly, but not avoiding it altogether as using it responsibly will also help to boost your credit score. Use credit only for grocery shopping, or online purchases (if you don’t shop too much online). That way, it will be easy to control your credit card debt.

Are you a new grad worried about tackling your student debt load? Join the conversation and share your thoughts using hashtags #DebtSolutions, #StudentDebt and #Millennials.

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