By taking a hard squint at your family’s budget and picking a school with a tuition that won’t burst the purse strings. Intuitive, rewarding in the long run, and impossible to fathom in an age when parents buy Mozart records in hopes of raising the new Harvard baby. The result? The Cortney Munna figurehead. Saddled with nearly 100K of loans, working a job that barely pays the $1000+ bills on principal and interest, and wondering when there’s an end to the conundrum.
Enter Zac Bissonnette.
A University of Massachusetts (Amherst) senior who chose to attend public school in lieu of the pricier private options, and he will indeed be graduating debt-free for his decision. What’s more, he’s written a book to help students duped by high school counselors, admissions folks, financial aid reps, and the financially inconvenient “dream college” find an education that will match their financial needs. After all, as Zac (and countless economists) argue, college is the iconic example of diminishing marginal returns. Continuing your education after high school may give you a large boost over your competitors in the workforce, but listing your degree under the UPenn brand as opposed to the Penn State brand won’t do (as) much to fatten your future bi-monthly paychecks.
So what should you do if you’d like to erase student loans from your credit history?
- Parents should refrain from cashing out their home equity lines and 401K accounts. Unless, of course, you’d like the ‘rents to rely on social security and skimp on those winter getaways to Palm Beach.
- Downsize, downsize, downsize. Quit smoking, drive your car for an extra year, and easy on those latte purchases. Also, GET A JOB AND QUIT MOOCHING.
- FAFSA Form Woes: Understand that college financial aid accountants don’t take into account how much your parents have saved for retirement, or how much of the housing mortgage they’ve paid down.
- Choose the state school if you can’t pay. Consider this your personal austerity program for a debt-free education.
For more, check out Zac’s book for yourself.
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