Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Student Loan advice please

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Student Loan advice please

    I don't know where to begin. I have a few credit cards that I'm paying down using a variation of the snowball method, adding $25 a week in addition to minimums. I have an older car with a small loan. The big one is my student loan. I borrowed a lot. There are a lot of reasons and personal situations behind that, but it's irrelevant. Here's where I am now. I have an associates degree in accounting and $40,000 in debt. I make $15 an hour (which is pretty good for my area) and money is tight! I'm paying interest only on my loans right now, which is so depressing I try not to think about it. I found out mid-education that my technical credits would not transfer to a public college, so if I want to go back for my BS (which I do), I'm going to be paying over $400 per credit at a private college. I have no retirement savings and the healthcare benefits at work are more than I can afford. Should I go back to school now and incur about another $20,000 (including books and fees) and hope to make more money? Should I wait and try to pay things down before I go back?

    Please look for specific questions about healthcare and retirement that I'm going to post separately.

    Thanks in advance for your input!

    Oh, I'm 34, if that changes anything.
    Last edited by annibe11e; 06-04-2013, 11:08 AM. Reason: Added my age!

    #2
    What state are you in, Annibe? Why not consider a state university (public) instead for your BA/BS? The cost should be considerably less than 20k.

    Comment


      #3
      My credits won't transfer to a public university.

      Comment


        #4
        Then how about community college to complete all needed undergrad credits, followed by a state university?

        Do you work in the accounting field now, in some capacity?

        Edit: I meant lower division credits, not undergrad credits. Sorry for the confusion!
        Last edited by Petunia 100; 06-05-2013, 11:00 AM.

        Comment


          #5
          Is only having an assiciates keeping you from getting a better job in your field? Also, I'd at least wait until you have the credit cards and car loan paid off before you consider more schooling.

          Is there any way you can take on a part time job to help speed up the debt repayment process?

          Comment


            #6
            The problem is you're hoping a degree will translate to more money, but unfortunately too many people are finding out that it doesn't. Even if your salary doubles from $15 to $30 an hour (an unrealistic goal for most new graduates) your debt will have also doubled and begun accruing interest.

            I don't think you can afford to go back to school right now, especially to a private school. I wouldn't be surprised if you could start from scratch at a 4-year public or community college and wind up paying less than the two years you would need at a private school.

            But either way, it doesn't look like school is an option at the moment unless you can find a second job or figure out a way to pay down your debt (not just the interest). At your age you should be contributing to a retirement nest egg and have a substancial emergency fund in place, especially since you don't have health insurance.

            I would only consider going back to school once those priorities are addressed.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Petunia 100 View Post
              Then how about community college to complete all needed undergrad credits, followed by a state university?

              Do you work in the accounting field now, in some capacity?
              I got my degree through a community college. My gen ed credits would transfer, and I will be taking the rest of them at that college. I included those credits in my $20,000 estimate. My technical (accounting) credits will not transfer to the state university. I would have to retake all of my accounting credits. I believe that would be 48 credits, but I'd have to look. Also, I work a day job (as an Accounting Specialist), so I would not be able to meet the class schedule at the university without leaving the accounting field. The private college offers night and online classes, so that is a big draw for me.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by breathemusic View Post
                Is only having an assiciates keeping you from getting a better job in your field? Also, I'd at least wait until you have the credit cards and car loan paid off before you consider more schooling.

                Is there any way you can take on a part time job to help speed up the debt repayment process?
                Yes! I've been looking for a part time job. No luck so far, but the college kids just left for the summer, so now should be the best time.

                Thanks everyone for your input so far. I should add a few details. My credits from the two year college will expire at some point and no longer be transferrable. I cannot get any of the colleges to pin down a time frame for that, however. Are any of you familiar with that?

                I have considered moving to an area with more/better paying jobs, but I have to stay relatively close to home, since I only have two college transfer options. I feel like I need to just dive in and get it done, so my options for jobs and location can open up a bit.

                I should also mention that this goes beyond money. I am only the second person in my family (dating back as far as I'm aware) that has ever graduated college. My dad got a two year vocational degree. I really want to go all the way. I'm just so frustrated by my current situation, I wish I could start over and have even considered going into another field entirely (although I think I really love accounting, but am just overwhelmed).

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by annibe11e View Post
                  I got my degree through a community college. My gen ed credits would transfer, and I will be taking the rest of them at that college. I included those credits in my $20,000 estimate. My technical (accounting) credits will not transfer to the state university. I would have to retake all of my accounting credits. I believe that would be 48 credits, but I'd have to look. Also, I work a day job (as an Accounting Specialist), so I would not be able to meet the class schedule at the university without leaving the accounting field. The private college offers night and online classes, so that is a big draw for me.
                  I have a BS in Accounting, which I earned at night at my local state university, while working full-time. I have an AA in Accounting, which I earned at my local junior college. I was able to transfer nearly everything. Those courses which did not transfer were not a surprise, as I knew they were not college level courses (a guidance class, a 10-key by touch class, a payroll tax class).

                  I say this only to shed some light on my frame of reference.

                  I don't understand why your accounting courses would not transfer. Did you take college level Financial Accounting and Managerial Accounting? If so, they should transfer. In my state, those are the only lower division accounting courses. All other accounting courses are taken junior and senior year.

                  I also ran into a "shortage" of lower division general education courses. In my state, there are more required for a BS than for an AA. So, I took those at the local junior college at night before transferring. After transferring, it took me 3 years to earn my BS at night. I took 2 courses per semester, took summer courses, and also winter. (My particular school offers a 4-week winter term between 1st and 2nd semester.)

                  I graduated in 2010, so it hasn't been that long.

                  I do think you will have more opportunities with a BS/BA than with an AA. However, I would be very reluctant to overpay.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by annibe11e View Post

                    I should also mention that this goes beyond money. I am only the second person in my family (dating back as far as I'm aware) that has ever graduated college. My dad got a two year vocational degree. I really want to go all the way. I'm just so frustrated by my current situation, I wish I could start over and have even considered going into another field entirely (although I think I really love accounting, but am just overwhelmed).
                    Been there, so I totally get that.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by annibe11e View Post
                      I got my degree through a community college. My gen ed credits would transfer, and I will be taking the rest of them at that college. I included those credits in my $20,000 estimate. My technical (accounting) credits will not transfer to the state university. I would have to retake all of my accounting credits. I believe that would be 48 credits, but I'd have to look. Also, I work a day job (as an Accounting Specialist), so I would not be able to meet the class schedule at the university without leaving the accounting field. The private college offers night and online classes, so that is a big draw for me.
                      Can you argue the credit transfers with the university you are transferring to?

                      I was able to do that when I transferred from community college to a state university. You'll need course descriptions and syllabi. I also had to sit down with the assistant dean of admissions. It was worth it.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        I could try to argue my credits in. One of my instructors (during my last semester) told the class that we should save our syllabi. First I'd heard of that. Is that something I can go track down from previous instructors?

                        Comment

                        Working...
                        X