Many of you have heard of the Parent PLUS Loan before. Some of you may have had to have your parent take that loan out for you during college. I could have asked my mother to take one out, but I chose not to. Today, I want to share with you five reasons why I never took out a Parent PLUS loan.
My College Wasn’t That Expensive
For the most part, my college expenses were covered by my financial aid. If I had asked my mother to take out that loan, I would have been setting both of us up for failure. The couple of times that I did need extra money, like to pay my summer school fees, I took out a private loan. I didn’t want to put that extra burden on my mother.
I Didn’t Want her to Have More Debt
The second reason that I didn’t ask my mom to take out a Parent PLUS loan was because I didn’t want her to be more in debt. Growing up, I never knew how much money she actually had. I do know that she took care of three children with only one income. I knew she had a credit card or two when I was younger. By the time I was in college, I made it a point not to cause her any more debt.
Also, my mother was in college for six years. I know she had to take out loans. I know she was still paying on them years after she graduated. There was no way I’d have another student loan be in her name. The Parent PLUS loan simply wasn’t going to happen. Not asking her to take a Parent Plus loan was a no brainer for me.
I Didn’t Want to Be in More Debt
One thing that I didn’t want to do was get in more debt. Even though a PLUS loan would have been in her name, I would not have let her pay it. I would have taken responsibility for that loan. I’m so glad that I was smart enough not to take it out. That would have been another $10,000 or more added to the debt that I already have. Stafford and Private Loans are enough for me.
The Interest Rate was Higher
One thing that I can remember is that the interest rate was higher for the PLUS loan than some of the others. That was another good decision that I made by not taking it out. As I stated earlier, I could have had a lot more debt because of it. Who knows how much more the loan could have been because of the interest? I think I dodged a bullet by not fooling around with this loan.
Not Sure if the Loan Would be Approved
Earlier I stated that my mother took care of three kids with one income. That happened because she got a divorce when I was younger. I know she had to make some sacrifices for my siblings and I. Because of some of those sacrifices who’s to say that the PLUS loan would have been approved in the first place. I know that if the PLUS loan would have been denied I would have been able to receive more unsubsidized loans. I didn’t want that to happen either.
I’m glad that I was able to get an education without having to take that PLUS loan out. I know that everyone isn’t in that situation. Some people have to take out the PLUS loan or so they think. There are a couple of things that they can do if they don’t want to take it out.
Instead of having their parents apply for the PLUS loan, they can apply for a private loan. I did that during two of my summer school terms. I wanted to continue my education and wanted all the loans to be still in my name.
If a student has good grades, they can apply for scholarships. Scholarships have different stipulations. Some are easier to get than others. Some of them depend on your GPA. Others can be applied for with just a simple essay. There are thousands of scholarships out there. You just have to apply for them. Even if you don’t need the Parent PLUS loan, you should still apply for some scholarships. You can’t beat free money.
Get a Job
The last thing that a student can do is get a job and pay for the tuition. Some schools have payment plans. They will allow you to pay your tuition in increments. If you don’t want to take out a Parent PLUS loan getting a job and paying the remaining balance of your tuition is another option for you.
Many students take out the Parent Plus loan not knowing what may happen in the future. I wasn’t interested in getting my parent in any more debt. If you feel the same way, look at one of the three alternate ways to pay your tuition balance if you need to.