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98
Posted by
Experienced Borrower
1 year agoGilded1
ArchivedStickied postModerator of r/StudentLoans

We get this question all the time, so here's a PSA/Sticky.

Text from /u/betsy514:

There is almost never a reason to pay anyone for help with your student loans. There isn't a person or entity on the planet that can get you a lower payment or forgiveness that you can't get for yourself - for free - by working with your loan holder or the various free resources.

There is usually nothing illegal about these services - unless they are deceptive as to what they are offering. They are simply document processing services. They do not have magic wands or special contacts or intel on the student loan industry.

If it sounds too good to be true it is. If they say they are associated with the feds or your loan servicer - they probably aren't.

Read these things https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/about/announcements/debt-relief-message

http://www.usnews.com/education/blogs/student-loan-ranger/2015/05/20/ask-4-questions-to-avoid-being-duped-by-a-student-loan-service

Mod note:

If you have additional resources or comments, please leave them below and I can build a more permanent and comprehensive sticky post.

Edit: Nerdwallet has a list of companies to avoid: https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/dont-trust-companies-student-debt/#watchlist

Edit: Also, you may see targeted ads based on the debt relief from schools with fraud issues or closures: https://www.usnews.com/education/blogs/student-loan-ranger/articles/2017-07-19/dont-fall-victim-to-debt-relief-companies

Edit: FTC cracking down on some of these companies, with list of names to avoid: https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2017/10/ftc-state-law-enforcement-partners-announce-nationwide-crackdown

191
Posted by
Experienced Borrower
7 months ago
ArchivedStickied postModerator of r/StudentLoans

Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) started in October of 2007, and it's now 10 years later, so the question of "has anyone actually gotten their debt discharged with PSLF yet?" has been coming up pretty regularly.

Only borrowers that jumped on the program immediately will be eligible for now, and that number is pretty low.

Rather than making a new thread, please read the threads linked below first. Post any questions in this thread. If you're one of the first to get your loans discharged, we'd love to hear about it.

Link

Link

Link

Link

Link

Link

191
40

I am waiting on a discharge for my undergrad loans (under $12K) but I've officially paid off $50K in grad school loans over the past 3 1/2 years. Could have done it in sooner but it was important for me to experience having my own place before marriage, and I love to travel so I felt like I needed to also enjoy the fruits of my labor while paying off debt. I can now save the money I was using to pay off debt (almost one whole paycheck) and up my 401K contributions/savings/play money. WOOHOO!!

40
9

I just got off of chat with two individual representatives and they both told me that if you're submitting paperwork whether it be for deferment, forbearance etc they are extremely behind by about 2 months in all of those departments. Given their not so great reputation, I thought to leave people know in case they're having as much anxiety as I am with this.

9
6

My loan is through Sallie Mae and at the time, my mom co-signed for me. They are vultures about late payments and call her constantly. I've got it halfway paid off but I still owe about $3600.

My bank offers term loans and I'm considering using one to completely pay off Sallie Mae. That way, I can pay my bank the remaining balance and my mom won't get harassing phone calls. Tldr; I want to move my student loan debt to my bank instead of Sallie Mae.

2

I am going to be a transfer student at school that I've been wanting to go to since my senior year of high school. I looked at my financial aid package to find that there was the option of taking out a parent plus loan for "expected" 12,000 a year...so $6,000 a semester which would be paired with the subsidized and unsubsidized loan. I approached my mother about possibly applying for the Parent plus loan to cover the cost and she refused and told me to ask my father. Seeing as I'm not on speaking terms with my father I cannot ask him. I know there are private loans but I have zero credit so I wanted the perspective of people that have taken out student loans. Is there a possibility that I will be approved for private loans? If this was confusing I will provide more information on the FA package.

2

Both of my younger sisters currently owe appx $20k in federal subsidized/unsubsidized student loans. I’d like to gift them each enough to pay off one of their unsubsidized loans but I’m unsure how this will be affect my taxes or their deferment status.

Does anyone have insight or experience into this? Any help or info would be very appreciated.

3

I graduated in May, but my loans still say I am in school until May of 2019. Is it normal for them to take this long to get updated? I completed exit counceling and graduated so I figured it would be updated by now.

1

Seems like I can avoid paying any fees if I use billpay but I wanna send my money to the right place for the Perkins loan.

2

Considering applying to grad school shortly, and I neglected to do a few payment on my student loans starting off (oversight on my end).

This is what the department of education states about PLUS loans and adverse credit history:

https://studentaid.ed.gov/sa/sites/default/files/plus-adverse-credit.pdf

The specific question I have is related to "90 or more days delinquent as of the date of the credit report." Does this mean if it was over 90 days late a week ago, but is now in good standing and paid, it would be considered as adverse history?

2
1

Hello all,

I am about to start repayments on my considerable student loan debt. With my spouse's combined income, income driven repayment plans don't actually lower our monthly payment. My plan was to sign up for the 25 standard repayment plan, but pay extra every month (about the equivalent of the 10 year plan payment). That extra money would go directly towards my highest interest loan, using the avalanche method.

However, my financial loan officer told me that if you finish paying off a loan early, your monthly payment under the standard programs is recalculated. This would not be the case if you paid extra to all loans proportionally. In this case, it might make more sense for me to pursue the snowball method to get those monthly minimums lowered, and give me more "extra" money that I can direct as I please.

I can't find any official information confirming what she said about payment recalculation. My financial aid officer also could not point me to a specific resource; she said she had simply seen this in her own student loans. I'm just looking if anyone can point me to an official source to confirm this. Thanks!

1

Hey y’all,

Loan repayment starts in July for PLUS loan. I logged on to Navient today using my dad’s account to make the first payment and I noticed my balances are low, way too low. I went to a state school on loans only for about 2 and a half years and my total balance, including interest is only about 17k. I checked my financial aid records for my college and the PLUS loans for one year was more than that.

My parents suck with money and organization, so I have questions. Is it possible to refinance a PLUS loan? They just bought a house and maybe that’s what they did? Or is there likely another account where the rest of the loans are listed?

I’m just confused, any help would be appreciated.

1
69

Was able to pay down $65k in student loans in just two years because of the fortunate situation I am in. Living at home with my parents and having a great job made for an easy way to pay the debt down, but creating and sticking to my budget took a lot of willpower.

Thanks to other subreddits like r/personalfinance r/frugal and r/financialindependence I was able to create a budget, stick to it, and achieve my goal.

Wish you all the best in pursuing the same, keep grinding!

203

When I graduated in 2012, I made the specific choice to focus on paying my private loans first. There were about 4 in all, worth about 6k to 7k dollars. I officially got the letter from Wells Fargo (these were originally Campus Door but that place folded) saying that my loans are paid off!

There are lot more to pay off...I don't even want to say the number because it's depressing, but they are all federal ones, not private backed ones. And it gives me a real sense of accomplishment to know that I paid off a portion of my debt, even though I didn't have steady work for the first three years after graduation.

203
1

Hey all,

Assume that I had a standard us federal unsubsidised loan for graduate study under a standard repayment plan of 10 years. Is it possible to pay the the loan early and are there any penalties? Assume a hypothetical scenario where the loan amount is 10 years and I got an imaginary windfall which would allow me to pay it I'm 2 years after graduating. Would this be possible and would it incur charges? Thanks so much.

1

Hello, just looking for some info and trying to reduce overall interest. I have a subsidized and unsubsidized loan which have been consolidated for longer than 5 years. I have a fixed interest rate of 3.5%, so I’m mostly wondering if it i tried to refinance or make any changes will I potentially not find anything better than what I currently have?

My Fico and credit scores are around 750 -775.

Thanks for any input!

1

Hello, just looking for some info and trying to reduce overall interest. I have a subsidized and unsubsidized loan which have been consolidated for longer than 5 years. I have a fixed interest rate of 3.5%, so I’m mostly wondering if it i tried to refinance or make any changes will I potentially not find anything better than what I currently have?

My Fico is around 750.

Thanks for any input!

1

Just graduated with 61k worth of student loan debt (grad school)... will be making 91,500-105,000 yearly depending on negotiations. Majority of loans are direct unsub with a small portion (7k) being direct plus. I’m leaning towards the standard repayment (667) but am also wondering if I should do the graduated repayment and just throw whatever I can at the loan monthly towards principle. The graduated payment is 380. There’s also pay as you earn but the amounts are pretty high still and it’s 20 years as opposed to 10.

My main question is strategy. Would it be wiser to do graduated but actually pay an additional 500 or so monthly towards principle? By just how much will the graduated plan increase every 2 years? It makes me nervous thinking the amount could drastically change.

7

...when I think of my $139/month payment, why do I think of THIS song - In My Merry Oldsmobile, by Bing Crosby?

It's actually $138.85/month but it's close enough to be considered $139. Also, I have a ~$28,800 balance so that means I have 16 years and some months left to pay it off.

If anyone wonders about my Federal loans - they've been discharged and are under a 3-year monitoring period. That period is over in September 2020, then I am SO scot free! I just can't make over $16,000-some in a year.

7
1

Anyone have any suggestions on mentally committing to attacking loan payments? I graduated in May and I know it's in my best interest financially to start throwing everything I can at my loans but I am hesitating. I have been making payments when possible during school but now that I am getting a real paycheck it is tough for me to pour it all into loans. I also think "well what if something changes and a new repayment system comes out that doesn't have a tax bomb?". What did it take for you guys to begin your payments? Did it take someone motivating you? Did it help making a budget?

Just because I know people will ask I owe 120k all federal, making between 72-80k a year. Interest is around 5.5%, PSLF is not an option.

I have been leaning towards IBR and avalanche for whatever is left over.

Thanks everyone.

1

Pretty straightforward:

Got married and filed our taxes together and my student loan payment tripled. I'm enrolled in the Public Service forgiveness plan and, I believe, the PAYE repayment plan.

Will filing my taxes separately next year lower my payments, or am I fucked?

Thanks

2

I had rehabilitated my student loans years ago then went through a rough patch (divorce, unemployment, hospitalization, etc). Have got back on track the past 2 years and my loans are permanently assigned to government. What can I do to get back on track at this point? I know that I only get one rehab and I screwed that up but what can I do now?

25

Hey all,

I have been hearing about everyone paying of their loans and it is so inspiring. I am currently in the PSLF process (12 payments down, 108 to go!). I know the name of the game is paying as little as possible so the max can be forgiven, but it can be really difficult/discouraging to see my debt continue to grow. Does anyone who has been at this longer have any tips to help you stay positive and motivated? I would appreciate any advice!

If it helps, the amount I would pay after 120 payments would be less than half of the total amount of my loan (most likely).

7

I have seen this question posted quite a few times before, but with different intents than mine. For background, my girlfriend and I (M/F 21) have already imagined a life together and are very much in love. We would like to get married, and the added financial assistance from the government would be a plus.

As some background, both our families make a decent amount of money--enough so at least for the government to say we need no assistance with undergrad or grad school. Both sets will not support us once we graduate from undergrad. She plans on going to law school, and I to dental, hopefully at the same university/college. We are from different states, if that makes any difference in this process.

Again, we would like to get married for love, not for financial assistance. However, the federal loans/grants are a pretty nice plus. She has no debt at the moment, and I am currently in about $13k in debt from FAFSFA loans. Graduate school is going to rip us a new one though with debt, because neither of us have the money to afford it without loans.

I've noticed that, when married at least, oftentimes the EFC drops to near zero. In about half the schools we plan to apply to there is an option for family/married living as well which offers a greater stipend(/loan of some sort?) for married couples. We are currently talking over when we should get married, as we are graduating from the same undergrad school this coming year.

At first I thought we could wait one year into grad school to get married, but now I am re-thinkng this situation. If we are bound to marry, at least we think, regardless, why not do it sooner? We do not plan on having an actual ceremony, just one of the legal ones--and then worry about the ceremony when we are financially stable. We could do this the summer before entering graduate school potentially, or earlier if need be for financial aid things to be sent to schools. Either way, would this be a sound decision? Am I overthinking this entirely? Thank you for any help, I really appreciate the input.

TLDR: Girlfriend and I plan to get married because love and all that good stuff, regardless of federal assistance with loans in graduate school. Should we get married before to get the assistance sooner, or mid-graduate school to have a year just engaged/together?

2

I wasn’t able to find anything posted about this, so hopefully I’m not rehashing anything.

I also couldn’t really find this information on their website either, so I’m hoping someone here might know.

I got married during my time in college. I graduated last year and my name was changed while I was in college but my loans are still listed under my maiden name despite this change. Six months ago I began to work for a government agency and would like to start the PLSF process. My loans are currently under Navient. Will I need to change my name with them first before they will accept a transfer of my loans to the PLSF program? Or would I be able to just get it all turned in now? There is a check mark on the application for “has your name changed?” But I wasn’t sure if that would work in this case.

Thanks for any help! I’ve been trying to navigate this on my own but am having a hard time with it a little.

8

I am currently enrolled in a local community college, working on an associates degree. I was looking at possibly picking up another undergraduate degree or seeing if I can transfer into a Bachelor's program at Algonquin Univeristy in Ottawa CA. I looked at the studentloans.gov website to see, if I can get student loans to attend school there (I am currently getting loans for the college I am currently enrolled at). Algonquin is on their list of eligible schools but it states it's "deferment". I was wondering if anyone had any information on what this means, or any information in general about attending an international school? Thank you.

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