What is going on with the debt culture today? People are buying things they cannot afford and credit cards they should not have. Student debt is soaring, and the culture’s answer to the problem appears to be, “pay it later- maybe.” This is not designed to be preachy, but the culture as a whole needs to reassess where it places student debt in the priority list.
Student lenders can garnish wages, pull from tax returns, and generally cause a whole lot of harm. Yet, why is the culture more forgiving a student loan debt? Is it because it is a whole lot common now and a whole lot bigger? This fallacy will cripple people in their retirement. Do not fall victim to the idea that student debt can be forgiven if forgotten.
The Bankruptcy Factor
For one, credit debt can be written off in a bankruptcy. It is not ideal, but it is possible. Unfortunately, student debt is not so qualified. Very rarely can it be removed in a bankruptcy, and only in special cases (i.e. a disability or the original school shutting down).
Making Room For Debt
Paying off student debt may require a shift in how one responds to it. Instead of stalling or ignoring the debt, it should be handled. It is much smarter to make room for paying a student loan by limiting expenses in other areas. Sometimes, drastic measures are needed. Drop the car loan. It is only a liability. Turn that loan and roll it into a cheaper car with a lower monthly. Use the remainder saved for student debt.
Take $25 every week and put it into a jar. Use that money to pay off a student debt. Even small nicks against the giant debt rock will eventually cause it to crumble. These practical strategies essentially drive at one truth- it is better to pay something than nothing. It is not ideal. Debtors need to shift their approach and make room where necessary for a debt that can severely hold them back.
Arguably the first step of paying off student debt is getting over this ideological hump. Debt forgiveness programs are shady at best, and scams at worst. Be wary of companies that promise debt forgiveness, for they may be tacking on fees for stalling the debt that eventually comes back around twice as bad.