How I Paid Off Six Figures in Scholar Loans

By Melody Barthelemy

Melody’s story will not be unusual. We beforehand shared one lady’s lady story to repay six figures in scholar loans. In keeping with Scholar, nearly all of scholar mortgage debtors take out loans from the federal authorities, with a complete of 43 million debtors which have $1,447.1 billion excellent in scholar mortgage debt. Though these numbers appear daunting, with a plan and focus, it’s potential to overcome this debt. Melody shared her journey to paying off six figures in scholar loans.

My Again Story

So how did I amass six figures in scholar loans? Nearly all of my scholar mortgage debt amassed whereas I used to be in grad college, however I had additionally taken out scholar loans whereas finishing my undergraduate diploma. Once I reached the top of my grace interval after grad college, my scholar mortgage stability was at $89,275.11. I didn’t borrow that a lot, however my graduate loans have been unsubsidized, so I began accumulating curiosity the second I took the cash. 

Initially a spender, I labored loads from the time I used to be in highschool, however I by no means had something to point out for my cash. I used to be spending all of it on sneakers and nonsense. Once I obtained a bank card my senior yr of highschool, I believed, I’ll begin utilizing it to construct my credit score and it was a domino impact after that. 

I didn’t develop up studying one advantage of cash. I don’t ever recall seeing any relations even going to the financial institution. Sadly, I didn’t develop up studying about investing, saving, and utilizing credit score correctly.

Making the Determination

Once I acquired the letter from FedLoan Servicing that my grace interval was ending and I must begin paying, I used to be sick to see how a lot cash I owed. I didn’t suppose there was a approach out of the mess I had created, and I wanted to determine a strategy to remedy the issue that wouldn’t take me 20-30 years. I used to be not okay with spending two to a few a long time accumulating curiosity each day and placing my life on maintain. Early retirement, journey and having fun with a debt free life have been priorities!


I used to be fully at a loss on find out how to repay my debt. Whereas scrolling by way of social media, a pal shared her debt free journey. I reached out to study extra and he or she instructed me a couple of course she took at church about funds. It simply so occurred {that a} native church was additionally educating the course. In fact I signed up, and the teacher took the time to stroll by way of my price range with me and identified that I used to be spending near $700/month on consuming out, shopping for snacks, espresso, and so on.

Subsequent, I outlined my month-to-month bills right down to the final penny. I included holidays, reward giving, and my month-to-month tithe to church. After I realized extra about my incoming vs. outgoing, I labored on making a plan to repay the loans. My aim was to herald as a lot more money as potential to eliminate the debt. I took time to discover a good full-time job and get a constant aspect hustle.  I made little to no funds on my mortgage throughout that point as a result of my revenue fluctuated considerably. 

Here’s what I did to fulfill my aim:

1. Created a timeline for my scholar debt payoff aim, which was 4 years. The plan was to repay the debt by the top of 2020.

2. I calculated my each day rate of interest to find out how a lot was added to my complete stability month-to-month.  

3. I decided what I needed to pay each month to fulfill my aim, together with the each day curiosity. 

4. Reviewed my incoming vs. outgoing – I decided with a purpose to meet my aim, I wanted extra money. I locked down a everlasting aspect hustle and a seasonal aspect hustle. 

5. Each Friday, I made a cost on my mortgage from my aspect hustle. I made a cost from my full-time job, along with my autopay, each different Friday. 

6. Each penny that got here to me was used to repay the mortgage: bonuses, presents, and so on. I picked up each shift that was obtainable, oftentimes working all day, and each weekend. 

My plan started in December 2016 and completed in October 2020. From June 2015 to December 2016: I paid off $3,568.23. I paid off $103,896.09 from December 2016 to October 2020.

Setting Different Monetary Targets

One in all my objectives is to maneuver, so I began a shifting fund. My final monetary aim is early retirement. Consequently, I’m specializing in a bridge account to carry me over throughout the early retirement interval. Moreover, I additionally now put money into my 401K and Roth IRA to construct a pleasant cushion for my later years. 

Featured Picture through Shutterstock

About Melody

Melody lives in Windfall, RI. She likes to journey, eat good meals, and play a imply sport of UNO. She not too long ago transitioned from healthcare and the medical gadget business to staffing and recruiting. You’ll be able to comply with her on IG @frugalgirlbudgeting.

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