College Graduates: 6 Reasons to Pay Off Your Student Debt Now


    Did you just graduate from college? Do you have a student loan? Paying off a student loan as quickly as possible is an important step to help you find financial freedom for yourself. Imagine if you had no payment, how much money would you save each month? How many new choices would be open to you?

    In my opinion, financial freedom means being able to choose to do what you want to do, when you want to do it. There’s no reason to wait to enjoy some financial freedom now, and having your student loan paid off is just the first step. Here are my six reasons that now is the right time for you to focus on paying off your student loan.

    1. Enjoy More Years of Financial Freedom

    If you take 10 or 20 years to pay off your loan, you will likely have less time to enjoy living without that debt.

    2. Expenses May Never Be Lower

    As you get older, you may have a mortgage, multiple car payments or child-related expenses to account for while still trying to pay off your student loan.

    3. Limit the Impact on Your Lifestyle

    More than likely, you have figured out how to have fun and live large while on a student’s budget. Just keep it up for a while longer until your loan is paid off. It’s usually easier to stay within the same budget as it is to try and cut back on spending in the future.

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    4. Time is on Your Side

    It might seem obvious, but one of the fastest ways to make more money is to work more. At this stage in your life, you may have the flexibility to do some freelance work on the side or take on a second or third job. Take advantage of not having the family or community responsibilities you might have later on in your life to earn some extra money to put towards your loans.

    5. No Need to Put Life on Hold

    The Wall Street Journal says that student loans may drive graduates to think about delaying marriage and children. If you’re debt-free, you may have more money before marriage and potentially less stress going into marriage.

    6. Start Building a Solid Financial Foundation

    Most of us may encounter financial challenges at some point in our lives. These challenges will likely be less stressful and easier to handle if your finances are built on a stronger foundation of fewer payments, less debt and more savings.

    So, how do you do it? The formula to paying off your student debt is straightforward:

    • Generate more income.
    • Keep your expenses in check.
    • Use the money saved to pay the student debt until it’s paid off.

    Remember, it isn’t easy to get out of debt, but you may not have the flexibility in the future to pay off your student debt like you do now. So, take advantage of it — it might be worth it!

    Joshua Sheats is a Certified Financial Planner™ and the host of a daily personal finance podcast, "Radical Personal Finance." He teaches his listeners how to live a rich life now while building a plan for financial freedom in 10 years or less.