Soon, thousands of college students across America will be graduating and seeking employment. Soon afterwards, the government will come knocking on their doors asking them to begin making payments on their student loan debt. As most people are well aware, the job market for graduates remains tight with many graduates having to settle for lower paying jobs than they had hoped for or that their college degree suggests. As a result, many graduates will soon discover that the student loan repayment schedule is going to be a financial burden that is tough to bear, and may even find themselves looking for fast loans onlines as a means to pay off their student loans. The good news is that help is available under a new federal initiative called Payback Playbook. Of the $1.2 trillion in student loans, about 25% are in some stage of default. The new initiative requires loan servicing companies to provide borrower’s with a list of customized repayment options. These options include repayment schedules based on your income:
- Revised Pay as You Earn Repayment Plan (REPAYE Plan) – Generally you pay 10% of your discretionary income.
- Pay as You Earn Repayment Plan (PAYE Plan) – Generally you pay 10% of your discretionary income but never more than the 10-year standard payment plan.
- Income-Based Repayment Plan (IBR Plan) – Generally you pay 10% of your discretionary income if you’re a new borrower on or after July 1, 2014, but never more than the 10-year Standard Repayment Plan amount. Generally you pay 15% of your discretionary income if you’re not a new borrower on or after July 1, 2014, but never more than the 10-year Standard Repayment Plan amount
- Income-Contingent Repayment Plan (ICR Plan) – Generally, you pay the lesser of: 10% of your discretionary income or what you would pay on a repayment plan with a fixed payment over the course of 12 years, adjusted according to your income.
Under each of these programs, the loan is forgiven if it is not fully repaid by the end of the payment period (typically 20 to 25 years) and there are provisions for hardship relief.
A number of other repayment options are available including the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program. Because of the complexities and potential pitfalls you should consult a professional before making changes to your current loan program.
Ultimate Fitness Quest Final Report: “Anatomy of a Goal, Revisited”. Most highly successful people are very goal oriented so I wanted to set a personal goal and have readers follow my progress so they could see one in live practice. On April 4th, I launched the Ultimate Fitness Quest 30-Day Challenge where I set a goal to lose 15 pounds of body fat in thirty days. I outlined my ‘action plan’ and posted what I ate and how I exercised each day on Facebook. Several hundred people joined our group and many launched a fitness quest of their own. Over the thirty days I lost thirteen pounds and one and a half inches at my waist. I fell two pounds (and one-half inch) short of my thirty-day goal…so should I consider this a success or a failure? The answer provides a good lesson in goal setting. Too often we are too hard on ourselves when setting and measuring results of our goals and my experience is that goals often take longer than you think. I say I was successful because I made substantial progress towards my goal and I don’t intend to give up. I’ll keep going until I lose the entire fifteen pounds. In fact, my success has inspired me to go further and I plan to lose even more body fat while also focusing on gaining muscle and tone. Whatever your goal is, what is most important is that you have a clear vision of the results you want to achieve; develop and execute an action plan; monitor your progress and make adjustments as dictated by your results; and don’t give up until you reach your pre-determined destination.