Monday, August 24, 2009

Student Loans

Nalamienea's comment to my first post really hits home.  When my husband lost his job in 2001 I was scared.  Even worse, he worked in the tech sector and couldn't find another job.  I was a mom and wife, and a high school graduate.  I had no skills that would pay me above minimum wage. 

So, I went to school on student loans - we both did.  For three years we both went to school full time.  I earned a bachelor's degree, he has a bunch of mis- matched credits that don't quite add up to a degree.  Now, he's the one working full time and I'm staying at home.  Of course, I'm still going to school - pretty much just to avoid student loan payments.  I'll have my master's degree by the end of this year.

Once those loan payments become due, I'm not sure what we'll do.

He needs to go back and finish his degree.  First, we have to figure out how to get his loan status out of the dumps.

Filing bankruptcy doesn't help get rid of student loans.  I don't by any means think anyone should borrow money with the intention of filing bankruptcy to cancel their debt.  I do think, however, that there are some financial situations in which student loans should be forgiven.

My husband and I have a few little credit cards we haven't been able to pay on in a little while, but except for student loan debt, all of our unsecured debt together is less than $5,000.

So, even though we are having trouble now, without even making any debt payments, the biggest anchor around our necks is our student loans.

Back when we took the student loans, they were a life saver.  He couldn't find work in his field, so the money kept food on the table and a roof over our heads.  But easy money comes with consequences - and we're about to start feeling 'em...


  1. I am totally hearing you on this one. I did an entire 2-year degree at a private college on student loans before realized that it didn't do crap for me, so I've had to go back and start again. My debt will be 5 figures with probably a 5 at the beginning of it.

    Have you thought of teaching high school? If you guys live in a rural/high need area and you can teach in one of the high need fields, there's a loan repayment program for you. You'll have a monthly payment directly tied to your income and you won't have to pay more than 10 years. I don't have a website right now, but try googling "teacher loan repayment" or something like that.

    I'm with ya sister. Student loan debt is out of control in this country, and I know we're not in the boat alone.

  2. This is something, that is not that common to me. In Finland also higher education is free and the national insurence company (KELA) covers 80% of reasonable rent and then all full day students can get money support. All togehter this makes ~500€/month, so one doesn't live that well, or luxurious life, but it keeps the food in the table and roof above head. (Althought the reasonable rent is 250€/month, and in many towns/cities you can't even have shared appartment with that money). Of course some take the student loans, but it is fewer and fewer persons.