If you’ve read some of my previous posts, you know that I have student loan debt. I’m not ashamed of it. I realized that I made a few mistakes in the past and that I have to deal with it. I’m in the process of repaying those loans now. It’s going to take a little while to eliminate them, but I know that I will get it done. I looked at other ways that I could eliminate my loan debt. One way that I found that you can eliminate your loans is through Public Service Loan Forgiveness. With PSLF, you have to make ten years (120) of payments on time. Then your loans will be forgiven; it is offered to those who work in certain niches such as healthcare and education so long as they are non-profit, government, or public-related. My job is one of the companies that qualify for the program. I’m not interested in participating, though. In today’s post, I will be sharing with you why I’m not interested in the loan forgiveness program.
The first reason why I’m not interested in PSLF is because I doubt I’d be at a company that is eligible for the program that long. Ten years and 120 payments is a very long time. The longest that I’ve ever been at a job is two years. I don’t even expect to be at my current place of employment longer than four years. I’m the type of person that looks for opportunities. Staying in one company for ten years is just not for me.
Reason number two is that I don’t want to have a student loan bill for another eight years. I’ve been out of college for eight years already. I wasn’t able to pay on it for a few years due to my income. In 2014, I got serious and started making payments. As I continue to pay off my other debts, I will start making higher payments on my student loans. I’m 100% sure that I will have the loans paid off before eight years. It’s not going to be super easy, but I will make it happen. I have no choice.
The third reason that I’m not doing loan forgiveness is because I may end up paying more. My payment amount could change or even be lowered. My job situation could end up changing. I may no longer be eligible for the program and eventually have to pay the loans back in full. I won’t just have to pay the principle, but I’d also have to pay the interest as well. I’m not a fan of student loan interest. My rates on my loans range from 2.3% to 6.8%. While they aren’t too bad, my loan amounts are pretty high. The interest adds up. I’m not interested in starting over. I just want to eliminate them ASAP!
Depending on what my payment amount is, my balance could actually grow. To me, that is scary. My loan balance is finally going down after years of not paying. I can’t imagine seeing it go back up. Small payments and high interest is one reason that it could. I don’t have time to find out. I’d rather work hard, sacrifice and pay extra on those loans now. As I stated earlier, another eight years is a very long time to be waiting.
The fifth reason is that I’m an adult and I want to hold myself accountable. I got in this situation, and I will get myself out of it without the help of forgiveness. I accepted the student loans without understanding them all the way. I also neglected the loans when it was time to start repayments. I was the one that kept getting deferments and forbearances instead of stepping up to that plate and paying on them. I did all of that. The good thing is that I am the person that is side hustling and paying on the loans now. I am the person who understands interest and will be applying multiple payments each month to the student loans. I will be the person that get rid of those loans in under three years. It will happen, and I can’t wait to write about how I was able to do it.
The last reason why I’m not waiting ten years for loan forgiveness is because nobody really knows if the program will last. PSLF was implemented in 2007. The first group of people won’t be eligible to receive it until October 2017. That’s less than a year away, so we will see how it plays out. Also, who knows if the rules or requirements will change? It would suck for you to go through 8 years of forgiveness only for the program to change and say that you’re not qualified anymore. You would have wasted years paying a small amount only to now have to pay the loan off. If I were in that situation, I’d be sick.
Those were six reasons why I’m not waiting ten years for my loans to be forgiven. Everyone’s situation is different. Loan forgiveness may be just what the doctor ordered for you, but it’s not in my plans.