Wednesday, 6 June 2018

Can I Lower My Education Loan Debt after College?

Education is given huge importance in India. Whether we talk about engineering or medical, business administration or lectureship, every stream has its share of competition here. However, good education isn’t cheap. This is the reason why a number of students apply for education loans, especially when it’s a premier institute such as the MIT, or Oxford, etc.Although an education loan is a debt, in essence, it’s considered a good debt. This is because it’s a debt that increases your value just like a home loan would. So, when you take an education loan, you are not put in a bad light in any manner. The banks treat you as if you have a high creditworthiness unless you make some bad financial decisions that reflect in your credit profile or lead to a low CIBIL score.  That said, repayment can be an issue especially since you aren’t earning yet and it could also be your first loan ever.The following are some tips on how you can lower your debt after finishing college:

1. Look for Provisions
Given the nature of student loans, banks often offer different relaxations to meritorious and financially-weak students such as interest subvention, easier repayment terms, etc. In fact, female students can get a flat 0.5% concession on their interest rate.

2. Don’t Overlook Moratorium Period
Mortarium period is a grace period that the banks offer after you finish your education. During this period, you don’t have to repay the loan. So, you can use the time to find a job and get settled.While you are not required to start paying the EMIs during the moratorium period even if you get a job immediately after finishing college, there is a huge advantage of doing it anyway.Here is the thing- the banks start imposing interest as soon as the student loan funds are disbursed. So, all 3-4 years of your college, this interest gets accumulated which can easily grow so high as to match the principal amount itself. However, if you start repaying it while you are still studying, and during the moratorium period as well, then by the time you get a job and are able to start the repayment with full EMIs, the cost of the EMI will be very low.Many banks offer interest rate concession up to 1% for students who start the repayment during the moratorium period. So, that’s another big advantage.

3. Debt Consolidation
If you have taken another loan apart from the education loan itself, such as a personal loan or car loan, then you can consider applying for debt consolidation.In this, all the loans are merged to form a bigger but single loan. The advantage of this is that repayment becomes simpler and easier. Plus, you can also request for a lower interest rate which is not that difficult unless you have a low CIBIL score.

4. Plan for Rate Fluctuations
If your loan has a floating interest rate, then it means it can go both up and down during the term. Since there is no way of telling what the market conditions are going to be like in the future, it’s best to prepare for the worst-case scenario i.e. a high interest rate. So, make sure you have emergency funds that can be used to pay the EMIs if they grow bigger.

5. Don’t Mind the Work
When you have a student loan on your shoulders, then it should be your top priority to get it cleared. This is because when you start a career, then the income usually isn’t too high. So, unless you try to save every single penny and try to earn money through as many ways as possible, it can take a long time to repay the loan in full.Many students work overtime or work for incentives that increase their average monthly pay which helps clear the debt faster.

In Conclusion
So many students get so caught up in their jobs after finishing college that they don’t think about lowering their debt at all. However, it’s not that difficult. More than that, you absolutely must get rid of it asap so as to maintain a high credit score and low stress.

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