Have you ever felt like you’re the lead character in a movie playing on slow motion? You know, like you can see yourself making a mistake, but can’t stop it from happening? Well, here’s my $30,000 student loan mistake:
8 years ago on a cold rainy morning in May, my family proudly watched me march across the stage and shake hands with my University’s president. As I posed for my photo, freshly printed diploma in hand, I had no idea how my student debt would impact my life. It wasn’t until 3 months later, when I actually started receiving the bills in the mail, that I realized how much of a financial mess I was in. Owing so much money felt daunting. I felt like someone had punched me in the stomach and I couldn’t catch my breath.
You’d think that’s when I’d get my financial “act” together, right? $20,000 in non-defaultable debt at age 22 should have snapped me back into reality pretty quick. But it didn’t. I was young, stupid and irresponsible. Instead of buckling down and paying off my debt, I decided that I wanted to go back to school to get my graduate degree. Add another 10K to my undergraduate debt and I was hovering at just over $30k. $30,304.87 to be exact, but who’s counting right?
Shortly after I earned my masters degree, I ran a few numbers in an online loan calculator program and, “learned” that I’d owe nearly $350 per month and would pay back $11,500 in interest alone. Ouch! You’d think that somebody would have told me that when I signed up for $30K in student loans, right? Oh yeah, They DID! But was I paying attention? NO! I signed on the dotted line and didn’t even think about what the future payments or consequences would be. I figured I’d worry about that, “later”. Well later came quicker then I’d thought…Look for a post next week detailing how I came to my senses and paid off $30k in student loan debt.
Did You Take Out Student Loans? Do You Wish You Hadn’t?
|Adjusted Loan Balance:||$30,000.00|
|Loan Interest Rate:||6.80%|
|Loan Term:||10 years|
|Total Years in College:||4 years|
|Average Debt per Year:||$7,500.00|
|Monthly Loan Payment:||$345.24|
|Number of Payments:||120|
|Total Interest Paid:||$11,428.97|