Pay for school
- Pay with scholarship or gift money.
These are types of money you do not have to pay back. This includes savings from family, savings from work, government aid (GI Bill), work reimbursement programs, scholarships and grants. Exhaust all financing options which do not require being paid back. Did you know that $100M in scholarships go unawarded each year? If applying for one $1000 scholarship requires two hours of work and you are awarded it, consider it being paid $500/hour. All that essay writing doesn’t sound so bad now, does it?
- Borrow only to pay for tuition education-related expenses.
All other Costs of Attendance are impacted by your choices. For example, buy used textbooks or rent them for the semester. Consider paying for incidentals with financial aid dollars to be off limits. Do you want to go out for coffee with friends? Buy a new pair of jeans for this weekend? Make sure you’re paying for those items with earned cash from a job.
- Pay for all incidentals as you go along.
Work full time throughout the summer. Pick up a weekend job or work one night a week. Many students find they are able to supplement their coffee, shopping, or even vacation aspirations with part time work - as long as they’re goal oriented and stick to a budget. *Link to goals and budgets.
Make smart financial decisions now
Mapping Your Future
Think about what you can afford to repay
What will you make upon graduation? What will your debt to income ratio be?
See examples and find out what percentage is acceptable, excellent, or overextended.more