GREENSBORO, N.C. -- You took out loans to pay for college, but what happens when years later you still haven't paid it back?
Student loan debt is one of the nation's biggest burdens with nearly 70 percent of Americans owing more than $30,000 -- each! That's a lot of dough! So we brought in our money expert, Ja'Net Adams to help you out.
"I recently asked my community on Facebook what money topics they wanted to know more about and the most common response was how to pay off student loans. These were not recent graduates, but people who had been out awhile. Student debt is a big problem and I want to give a few tips to help those who have been dealing with it for awhile," said Adams.
1. Income Based Repayment
Income based repayment programs are exactly what they sound like. Your student loan payments are based on your income. If you are having trouble go apply for this FREE government program and get back on track. Go to www.studentaid.ed.gov
2. Paying extra to the principal
"I can't count how many people I have run into that think they are paying extra money on their student loans only to realize the balance is not decreasing at the rate they thought. It was because all the extra money was going to interest and not the principal," said Adams.
If you have extra money to pay towards student loans make sure that your student loan provider knows that you want it applied to the principal and not the interest.
3. See if your employer has student loan repayment programs
More and more companies are trying to attract top talent with their new workplace benefit, student loan payoff. Even if they don't offer to pay the entire loan off, many of them are paying a nice chunk off!
"You will have to work at the company for a certain amount of time to qualify for the benefit. There is also one city government (city of Memphis) who has added this option to its' employees!"
Adams says there's help and hope out there!
"No matter how long you have been out of school you still have options. Hopefully these options will help you pay the debt off soon!'