Talking to Your Parents About Student Loans
Getting a student loan is something that many kids need to rely on in order to afford post secondary school. Even parents that have invested in a child education fund for their kids may not have enough to cover the full costs involved with going to school. Tuition, remember, is only one small factor of the expenses. There is a pretty good chance that you are going to need to review your credit information and take out a student loan but you should always discuss this with your parents first.
The truth of the matter is that school is expensive. Tuition is going up every year and there are several other costs involved with attending school. Books, student fees, transportation, rent, food - all of these things will need to be paid for somehow. Most students will not be working full time or not even at all while attending school and thus they will need to rely on their savings in order to actually afford school. Or, they will need to rely on Mom and Dad.
If you want to attend college, then good for you. This is the best way to ensure a good career and a successful life down the road. Although there are always obstacles involved, you can overcome them. This is what a student loan is there for.
Making a Budget
Before you apply for a student loan, however, you should sit down with your parents and have a conversation about what you want to do and how you want to go about the next four years of school. Sit down and go over a budget of how much you expect to need every month. Think about things like rent and groceries as well as bills and unexpected costs.
Show your parents the list. They will most likely tweak a few things if you are a little off the marker. For example, budgeting $10 per week for food is not going to get you too far. $100 is more reasonable. They may also be able to contribute a little bit of their own savings, in some instances, to your fund.
Once you have a better idea of how much you are going to need, you and your family should look at ways to cut down. Perhaps it would be cheaper to remain at home for the first year instead of paying for a place on your own. Perhaps it would make more sense to drive to school the extra 20 minutes instead of spending $400 a month on rent plus food, plus electricity, plus, plus plus. This is one way you and your family may be able to compromise and save for college.
When you are applying for a student loan you will need to have proof of acceptance to the school of choice. Most banks will not approve you unless the school is accredited and unless you have back up from your Mom or Dad or unless you do have money in your account. It might be a good idea to ask your Mom or Dad to help you out with the student loan application.
Keep in mind that in addition to student loans there are also incentives that help pay for school. There are government funded loans, grants and scholarships on offer. Make sure you explore all your options for finance when it comes to going to college. Asking your parents for help and talking to your parents about student loans is a good way to bridge the communication gap and prove your independence, responsibility and desire to better your life.
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