When Should You Consolidate Student Loans?

If you have just graduated from college, the likelihood is that you are under a large amount of debt in the form of student loans. You might be wondering if there is any way to reduce the amount you have to pay. One solution for reducing your debt is to consolidate your student loans. Student … Continue reading When Should You Consolidate Student Loans?

If you have just graduated from college, the likelihood is that you are under a large amount of debt in the form of student loans. You might be wondering if there is any way to reduce the amount you have to pay. One solution for reducing your debt is to consolidate your student loans. Student loan consolidation is similar to refinancing a house on better terms: although the principal of the loan will not be affected, the interest rates you can lock in when you consolidate student loans to a fixed rate can be substantially better, reducing your monthly payments by up to forty percent. Plus, you might be able to stretch out your payment time to reduce your monthly payment amount even further.

The disadvantage when you consolidate student loans during your initial six-month grace period is that you must start making your payments right away. This can be difficult if you have not found a job after graduation, although you can wait until just before the grace period ends to consolidate, and still receive the lower rates. Furthermore, once you have consolidated your student loans, you cannot un-consolidate them again, so make sure to consider your choice carefully.

How is Interest Calculated When I Consolidate Student Loans?
When you consolidate student loans, your lending company pays off your government loan and issues you a new loan under its own name. The typical way to determine the interest rate on the new loan is to take the average interest rates on all of the student loans, and offer a new rate that is an eighth of a percentage point higher (up to a maximum interest rate of 8.25%). Although agreeing to a higher interest rate might not sound like a good reason to consolidate student loans, this rate is fixed over the life of the loan, whereas the government rates will fluctuate. Since rates are at an all time low right now, locking in the current rates might be a good idea. Furthermore, many banks give you ways to bring down the percentage rates. For example, some lending institutions will drop the rate by as much as a quarter point if you agree to automatic deductions from a checking or savings account, whereas others drop the rates after a certain number of timely payments. As an additional bonus, there is no penalty for paying off your consolidated loan early.

When Would You *Not* Want to Consolidate Student Loans?
Before you decide to consolidate student loans, you should carefully consider your alternatives. For example, did you realize that it might be possible to have your student loan cancelled altogether? Student loan forgiveness options include volunteering, for the Peace Corps for example, or working for the government in a low-income area as a teacher or doctor. Cancellation is not possible, however, after you have consolidated your student loans. If this kind of work interests you and is available, it could be a better option than loan consolidation.

Another time to hesitate before you choose to consolidate student loans is when you are close to finishing your payments. Stepping up the payments and saving yourself some interest and the hassle of consolidation might be more advantageous to you.

Finally, there are loans that you might want to keep open because they offer special advantages. For example, if you are considering going back to school and you have a Perkins loan, you would not want to consolidate that with your other student loans. The government will pay all interest on Perkins loans while you are in school, but if you have chosen to consolidate student loans, you will not be able to receive this benefit. You could always choose to leave any special kinds of loans out of the consolidation mix, however.

I Want To Catch Up on My Retirement Planning What

I Want To Catch Up on My Retirement Planning What Should I Do?

Good question and even better, youre thinking in the right direction about your future which is someday retiring. If youre one of those people who havent saved any or very much money for your retirement, its never too late for you to start now! Its important that you do start and soon. It doesnt take long for age to slip up on you fast if you know what I mean! So, just get started on your retirement planning now while youre thinking about it. You may want to consider some of these tips and information to get you started:

1) If the employer you are working for offers a 401K plan wherein you contribute a percentage of your earnings towards retirement, consider signing up for this plan! In most instances, the employer may match a percentage of the contributions you make to your 401K account. Your contributions can be made on a pre-tax basis which will help your money grow faster in your account.

2) You may want to consider taking a second job to add more income for your retirement. This will assist you in increasing the amount of money for your retirement fund. If youre able to fit a second job into your schedule, make sure this would be feasible for you and your family without causing problems.

3) Save more of your money by cutting back on some of your expenses. You may want to reduce the number of times you eat out, go to the movies, shop, and any other areas you can cut back on to save towards your retirement.

4) Consider saving your change! Thats right, save your change. You would be surprised at the amount of money you can accumulate in a small amount of time by saving your change. Your change could be set aside for your retirement fund. So, start putting your coins away for your future!

5) Reduce or eliminate your spending on your credit cards. The less you pay on your credit cards, the more money youll have to save towards your retirement. So, if you can pay cash for that item you need to purchase, do that instead of charging it to your credit card. Youll not only save yourself interest charges, but, youll have extra money to put away for your retirement.

6) If you have a home and are using it as a cash machine or atm by taking out your home equity via loans or a credit line, stop what youre doing! Your home is one of your largest investments and will most likely be a retirement vehicle for you. Youll either want to have your home paid off prior to retirement or be in a position to sell your home to obtain the equity to use as retirement income. If you have your home equity tapped out, then you will not be in the position during your golden years to enjoy your retirement. Youll probably be still paying a mortgage that you may not be able to afford and will not have much money in your retirement fund.

Its better late than never when it comes to starting your retirement planning. So, go ahead, start working on catching up with your retirement planning today, youll be glad you did!

Shred All Your Debts Through Credit Card Debt Consolidation

It is not possible for a person to carry cash all the time, so he prefers the plastic money called as credit cards. While using plastic money, he forgets the ill effect of using credit cards. That is, he has to pay a high rate of interest on using such credit cards. Once the person has entered the black hole of credit card interest, then it is difficult to come out of it. So in order to reduce his interest he should limit his usage of credit cards and also should try to consolidate his past credit card debts.

The person can also consolidate his credit card debts through various alternatives available such as credit card debt consolidation loan or a formal and informal credit card debt arrangement. But the credit card debt consolidation loan is advised to be the best way to consolidate the debts. Credit card debt consolidation loan also helps to save lots of money. Your credit card debts carry high rate of interest, but if you take a loan it will carry lower rate of interest. But sometimes it may not be good for every person. Though the loan carries lower rate of interest it leaves the person in the double debt problem.

Debt consolidation loan can be availed in two forms whether the secured loan or the unsecured loan. In the former, the person is needed to keep his security with the lender. The security is also the one of the reasons which let the lender to lower the rate of interest. While in the latter, there is no need to keep any collateral with the lender. Only the person is required to give a proof of his income and employment in order to avail the unsecured debt consolidation loan.

In addition to the various alternatives the person must also consult the debt counselor. The debt counselor will examine his financial position and will analyze his budget. After analyzing the budget he would advice on the best alternative in regard to your status.

Today the Credit Card Debt Consolation is also available online. Consolidating credit card debts through online makes the task simpler and faster. You are only required to provide a brief of your problem and certain financial details. And the people need not to worry regarding the security of the financial details. Because today every website uses certain encryption softwares in order to safeguard the data of an individual.

Debt consolidation and what it means to you

Credit card debt and other personal debt is one of Americas most threatening dispositions. Millions of individuals every day are going further and further in to debt. Credit card companies and other debt collection business offer no remorse or help to those who have already spent their money. This causes a strange relationship between the ones the debt is owed to and the one that owes the debt.

For many of those there are only a few options. One of those options is just dont pay. This is a problem because it means getting calls day after day from angry intimidating debt collectors and constant fear of repossession. Another way is to file bankruptcy. It means more expenses and horrible credit for long periods of time. You have to go to court for this and then you can not even thing about getting a credit card for about 10 years. Some also may decide to pay debt in the standard old fashioned way. One bill at a time. This is essentially the best way to do this. But what if those bills add up to be higher than your paycheck? How is this problem resolved? Debt consoladation may be the answer.

Debt consolidation is the process of taking ones debt and combining it into one monthly payment. The monthly payment is also often times reduced because of arrangements made with the debt consoladation company if you make your payments. Its the whole something is better than nothing bit. The ones in debt know they may never see a payment again if they dont agree to such terms. Lower monthly payments and less interest rates make it much easier for one to pay their debt off completely and work to make them credit worthy once more.

Being credit worthy is essential because that gives you the buying power of financing a house, financing a car, making larger purchases, getting a cell phone service and many other services that one cannot get without credit. Debt consolidation gives them the opportunity to do such things. It can be a hard way, but often times the right way. And it is not the hardest way by far. It is much more damaging to completely not pay your bills, or to claim bankruptcy. If you need help this is a great option.

The very best way to help debt is to never get into it in the first place. Good financial planning and responsible spending are the keys to building your financial future and staying away from debt problems and seeking debt help.