August 2020 – Student Loan Balance(s) Update

The U.S. is still kind of a mess, but I am feeling a bit more like myself this month in terms of my finances. I think making the decision to stay in my current apartment reaffirmed my commitment to getting rid of my student loans as soon as possible, and getting a part time job also helped me feel like I was making progress towards that. So, to the numbers…

July 2020 – Student Loan Balance(s): -$119,119.98 

August 2020 – Student Loan Balance(s): -$117,823.78

Difference: $1,296.20

Not my best month, not my worst. The continued administrative interest forbearance for federal student loans means my regular minimum payments continue to go a bit further. I didn’t pay a lot extra in July on my student loans but August should be considerably better and result in me paying off my first student loan, Private Student Loan 1 (PSL1), since I started blogging. Prior to beginning this blog a little over a year ago, I paid off one of the smaller loans.

I’m excited about my new part-time job and my ability to save and pay down my debt a little bit faster. Once PSL1 gets paid off next week (only a week prior to the balance transfer ending), I think I will begin putting all of my additional income towards beefing up my emergency fund to $5000.00. I will achieve this goal by the end of the year assuming I remain employed. After that, I will once again throw any additional income towards my student loans. I keep going back and forth on what the payoff order will be. While part of me would love to switch to the Ramsey method for the instant gratification of paying off some of those smaller loans, the other part of me wants to start paying off my first federal student loan, the largest of all of my loans by far, and the one that accrues the most interest each year. I will see how I am feeling in December once my emergency fund is beefed up and make that decision then. 

I will be back sometime next week once I pay off the balance transfer to celebrate dispatching my first student loan on this blog and calculating whether or not the balance transfer was “worth it.”

2 thoughts on “August 2020 – Student Loan Balance(s) Update

  1. Any difference of over $1000 in a month is a big deal. Exciting that you've rounded up enough cash to pay off the balance transfer; I'm interested in your thoughts on worth-it-ness next week. On the question of EF, snowball, etc, I basically feel like any progress is good progress and it kind of depends on who you are as a person, what specific order you do stuff in. But also this seems like a really great time to have enough cash on hand to get through a few months if necessary. I'm glad your job has been safe for now, but university jobs feel pretty fragile at the moment, if not quite as much as say working in a restaurant. So I'd definitely agree with putting your bigger effort into an EF right now.

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  2. Hello again :)Yes…the budget this month is TIGHT to make this happen. My updates capture the previous month (as in where do I stand the first of the month) so the payoff of PSL1 won't be reflected in my update balances until September 1st. I am torn on the was it worth it…hopefully I get some more clarity soon.You're right. Yea…at the end of the day, universities are credentialing institutions (see the European model). The further you get from that central business function, the tougher it becomes to justify your role in a tight economic environment. I am perhaps as far away from the mission as one can be so the $5000.00 savings is an absolute necessity. I would increased it much sooner but I played the odds on job security vs. paying off the balance transfer. Hopefully that doesn't come back to bite me…As for the snowball…you are correct. Ultimately, the best strategy is the one that results in you actually paying off your debt. I have an idea of which way I want to go. I think I am just trying to balance that desire with motivation level etc. As always, thank you for stopping by and taking the time to comment. Much appreciated.

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