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How to set realistic goals for student loan repayment

Cracking the code!

August 24, 2023
 min read
Last updated:
Jan 12
A woman eating cereal while reading off a laptop screen.

The gist: Shaping attainable targets, getting a solid grip on your cash flow, making a priority list of savings and loan payments, and ensuring you've got a space for a few joys of life is the recipe for a sensible student loan repayment plan.

Paying off your student loans can feel like trying to slay a dragon with a teaspoon. We get it, it's tough, it's daunting, but it doesn't have to feel impossible. Remember that every epic quest has its trials and tribulations, but it's the courage to continue that counts. Here's your metaphorical suit of armor and your sturdy steed. Let's gallop towards financial freedom together!

Understanding Your Loans

Before we charge at our foe, we need to know exactly what we're dealing with. Take a deep dive into the details of your student loan - the principal, the interest rate, the repayment terms, the works. This will help you figure out exactly how much you owe and the time it will take to repay. Knowledge is power, after all.

Mapping Your Quest: Budgeting with Flair

Now that we've assessed your loans, it's time to create a strategic map, or as the finance folks call it, a budget. Factor in all your income sources and expenses, from your salary to that fancy latte you can't do without. By understanding your cash flow, you can get a clear idea of how much you can realistically put towards your student loan each month.

Prioritizing Your Battles by Assessing Savings vs. Loan Payments

Financial wisdom tells us to save, and yet, here we are battling the student loan beast. So, what gives? Try to balance between savings and loan payments. Having an emergency fund is essential, but overburdening yourself with too much saving can make you lose ground on your loan repayments. Prioritize!

Leave Room for a Little Magic

Let's face it, all work and no play makes you a dull knight. You don't need to live on bread and water to repay your student loan. Make sure your budget allows for a little fun, be it a night out with friends, a Netflix subscription, or a well-deserved spa day. A little self-care goes a long way in keeping you motivated on your quest.

Set Realistic Goals: The Art of the Possible

You don't have to defeat the dragon in one go. Set small, achievable goals. Perhaps, start with aiming to pay a bit more than your minimum payment each month. Or, if you get a bonus or a tax refund, consider putting a part of it towards your loan. Every little bit counts and takes you closer to victory.

Paying off your student loan can seem like a gargantuan task, but remember, it's a marathon, not a sprint. Setting realistic goals, understanding your financial landscape, balancing between savings and debt repayments, and ensuring you've got room for life's little joys will make your journey much more manageable. So, keep your chin up, wear your courage on your sleeve, and remember, you've got this!

*Prices fluctuate based on season and day of the week.

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