student loans

Financing & Loans

IDR (Income Driven Repayment) – lessening the stress of federal student loan repayment.

Paying back student loans is a stressful experience, especially for a recent graduate who is either unemployed or making a low salary. That’s where IDR (Income Driven Repayment) plans come in. These plans were developed to help borrowers (students, not parents) keep loan payments affordable and manageable, lowering the stress that typically comes with repayment.

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Personal Finance

College savings – Facts and tips for parents

You know the saying, “The early bird catches the worm”. Well, when it comes to saving for college, the same idea holds true, but it’s more like, “The early bird catches financial peace of mind”.

It may seem as though your child’s college years are light years away, but time goes quickly and the last thing you want is to be caught financially unprepared for your child’s education. (Okay, it might not be the last thing you want, but it’s probably close.) So how do we stop that from happening? Read on…

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Credit Cards, Financing & Loans

How student loan debt and credit card debt affect your credit differently

If you’ve been juggling a monthly student loan payment with a credit card balance, you might have reasonably wondered at some point how exactly all that debt is affecting your credit. Debt obviously plays a significant role in your credit picture—how much of it you have and how you repay it are two major factors that affect your FICO® Scores, the credit scores used by 90% of top lenders. But how different types of loans and debt contribute to your scores isn’t readily apparent. Let’s clear up some of that confusion: Here are a couple important differences between how student loan debt and credit card debt can affect your credit.

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FICO Scores & Credit Reports, Financing & Loans

How Student Loans Affect Your FICO Scores

Here are some sobering statistics for anyone who recently graduated from college:

  • 70% of students graduating with a bachelor’s degree are leaving school with student loan debt
  • The average class of 2014 graduate with student loan debt owed $33,000—earning them the distinction of the most indebted class ever
  • 2014 graduates face a 8.5% unemployment rate and 16.8 underemployment rate

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Financing & Loans

How Recent College Grads Can Start Building Credit (in 3 Easy Steps)

Establishing credit when you’re just starting out can feel a bit like a catch-22: to establish credit, you need to get credit; to get credit in the first place, you need to have an established credit history. It can be an infinite loop of frustration (one you should get familiar with if you’re a recent grad — to get a job, you need work experience, which you can only get if already have a job . . .).

Luckily, breaking free of this paradox isn’t as hard as it initially sounds if you know where to start and know what to do once you get going.

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