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Student Debt Weighing You Down? Consider Moving!

Are you a recent graduate drowning in student debt?
Welcome to the club. Many graduates are not making regular payments on their student loans. While unemployment rates are steadily improving, the chances of a recent graduate finding work is little better than flipping a coin; around 40% the unemployed are recent graduates.
Student Debt Weighing You Down? Consider Moving!
Traditionally, college graduates are expected to move out on their own. You are supposed to become fully independent after reaching this milestone. In modern times, this notion has gone out the window. After celebrating their achievements, many graduates hang their hats (and presumably their mortar boards) at home with their families. In fact, over a third of all young adults remain at home with their parents. Is this truly the best way to reduce your student debt?

A change of scenery might be the answer

Consider the cost of moving as an investment for a more financially stable future. Moving can cause a decrease in your monthly spending and open avenues to new career opportunities. You may have less support readily available from friends and family, but you will be spending less while living at your new residence. Several cities around the US are fantastic locales for recent graduates due to low cost-of-living and many open employment opportunities. You will obviously want to base your decision on where to move on what type of career you are looking for.
Student Debt Weighing You Down? Consider Moving!
Bismarck, ND has the best unemployment rate in the country
Ideally, you will want a job offer prior to moving, but this can be difficult to bag without a face-to-face meeting with the employer. Do not let this stop you from moving. Spend some time saving money, if you can; you should save at least enough to live for two months. If you can organize at least three promising job interviews, you have good chances. Do not stick up your nose at positions that seem to be “beneath you”. Working at a restaurant or retail chain can supplement your income, but it is key that you continue to search for work.

There are many changes to consider when moving to a smaller residence. Most of what you think you need are only things you want. Create a list to separate items that are essential, items that can be donated, and items that need to be trashed. If the clutter is severe, consider holding a garage sale and pawning things you no longer need. Visualize how much storage space you will need when making a move, and do not allow yourself to overpack. This will streamline your move (less junk!) and generate some extra cash.

While moving may seem like a financial burden, it is the perfect time to reassess your spending, as well as your current living habits. By taking some simple measures, your move can become much less costly and back-breaking. Learning to anticipate common property issues and repairs is a good way to avoid future problems.

Paying off those loans

Now the fun part. After moving and landing a job, you will want to take a look at how you are paying off your student loans. The average repayment schedule for student loans is 10 years. You will want to be sure you are handling them correctly. A major question when deciding how to handle whether you want to consolidate or refinance your student loans. Another question is “what in the world does that mean”?

If you are not having difficulty paying your current loans, consolidating your loans might be the right choice. Consolidating your loans simply means lumping all of your current loans into one bill each month. While this is great for simplifying the payment process, it is not ideal for lowering your monthly payments: the interest rate for your new loan will be an average of the interests rates for all of the loans that were consolidated.

Choosing to refinance student loans will also lump all of your current loans into one bill, but it is different than consolidation because you will get a new interest rate. If it is a notable improvement, this new interest rate could save you thousands of dollars.

Staying at home after graduating is not something you are forced into. With the right planning, graduates can find themselves living as independently as they want to.

Thanks for reading. What experiences did you have after graduating? Feel free to leave questions or comments on this article. I will be monitoring comments and will address any questions or concerns.

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Any facts, figures or references stated here are made by the author & don't reflect the endorsement of iU at all times unless otherwise drafted by official staff at iU. This article was first published here on 12th November 2016.
Cody Hill
Cody Hill is a contributing writer at Inspiration Unlimited eMagazine.

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