Archive for May 2012

5 Things Every Student Should Know About Student Loans

I could never have attended Purdue University had it not been for student loans. I began dating Sallie Mae right away, and it took years for me to break up with her. With that said, there are several that every student should know about student loans. Here are five of them.

  1. Go to school for 4 years for a 4 year degree Or for 2 years for a 2 year degree. Not six years for a four year degree. This can have substantial financial consequences. For example, if you attend college for two years more than required for the degree, you will have to pay for two extra years of school PLUS you will forfeit the salary you could have earned during that two year period. For many people this is a $100,000 financial swing!
  2. Obtain a degree that will help you repay the loan There are many people who go to prestigious private colleges to obtain a degree that is the equivalent to underwater basket-weaving. While I think that underwater basket-weaving would be amazingly cool, it probably won’t help repay the loans. My mechanical engineering degree from Purdue University and MBA from Clemson University certainly helped me repay my student loans.
  3. Tech or Community College for the first two years can really lower costs Most states have established programs that allow all credits earned during the first two years of community college to transfer directly to the state schools. I have seen the costs for community college. They are much lower than state or private universities. The local community college where I live is literally one-third the cost of the state school.
  4. Obtain subsidized loans if possible Subsidized loans do not accrue interest while the student maintains at least half-time student status. They also do not accrue interest while the loans are in grace periods or deferment.
  5. The name of the college does not matter nearly as much as the effort you put into your studies Many students fall in love with a particular college and feel that they just must attend only that institution. I have discovered that no one really cares about the fact that I went to Purdue and Clemson – all they want to know is if I can help them accomplish their stated objective.

Print this out and have a conversation about it with your student or future student. My bride and I have been talking about this with our daughter since she was six or seven. I know it might seem like boring conversation, but I promise you that it has had a positive impact on our daughter and the plans she has made for education.

I have written an entire chapter on this topic in my book for high school and college students – What Everyone Should Know About Money Before They Enter The Real WorldI promise you it will help financially prepare your student for the real world. You can purchase that book HERE or for your e-reader HERE.

Read recent posts

Featured Tool Of The Month – Known Upcoming Non-Monthly Expenses Calculator

Do you ever feel like your finances have been side-swiped by a major expense, and that sudden expense causes immense stress and pain?

Chances are that you have, and it probably was a “Known Upcoming Non-Monthly Expense.”  The key word in that phrase is “non-monthly“.  Because it is not a monthly expense, it can tend to become an “out of sight – out of mind” item that seems to appear suddenly out of nowhere.

Think about it. Have any of the below items happened to you before and created a financial emergency?

  1. Car tires need replaced
  2. Sickness that created enough hospital bills to consume the entire insurance deductible (or worse yet – happened without insurance)
  3. Heating & Air went out
  4. Christmas
  5. Vacation
  6. Annual life insurance premium
  7. Annual property taxes

Just go ahead and say, “Yes, I have!” because we ALL have experienced one or more of these scenarios.

Here’s the solution – use the “Known Upcoming Non-Monthly Expenses Calculator” to transform your “non-monthly” expenses in “monthly” expenses.  See the example below:

Do you see it?  By converting the “non-monthly” expenses to a “monthly” expense of $579 every month, you have substantially lessened the impact on your budget!  Instead of having to suddenly come up with $1,200 when the annual property tax bill arrives, the money will just be there!

TIPS:

  • Be sure to recalculate your monthly savings number at least once per year
  • Don’t forget more long-term expenses such as college, weddings, vehicle replacement, and major home renovations
  • Set your savings for these expenses AUTOMATIC – by establishing an auto-draft

NOTE: This tool and dozens more are covered in more detail in my book, I Was Broke. Now I’m Not.

Read recent posts

You CAN Do This!

Anybody who has ever participated in a Financial Learning Experience has heard me say, “You CAN do this!”

These words are throughout my books as well.

There is a reason for this – it’s because I truly believe it!

  • I know you have an excuse, but you CAN do this!
  • I know you have a reason, but you CAN do this!
  • I know you have endured struggles, but you CAN do this!
  • I know you have encountered unfair situations, but you CAN do this!
  • I know you may be old, but you CAN do this!
  • I know you may be young, but you CAN do this!

One of my brothers recently graduated college … he’s turning 50 this year.  It’s never too late to fulfill a dream.

Another brother went through significant challenges and military tours … he’s now a doctor.

I have a friend who was $85K in non-house debt and had received foreclosure papers on his house … he’s now debt-free.

I know a young lady who makes less than $1,500 a month, and will completely own her first house by the age of 25.

I KNOW that you may have a good reason/excuse for why you have yet to achieve a dream, but it does not negate the fact that you CAN still accomplish it.

QUESTION: What is the dream you need begin believing in again?

Read recent posts

This Monday – Financial Learning Experience – Spartanburg, SC

I’m FIRED UP to be teaching the Financial Learning Experience at Restoration Church in Spartanburg, SC this coming Monday!

The event is FREE (thanks to Restoration Church!), but registration is requested.  Here are the details:

  • WHERE  Restoration Church 6655 PotteryRd Spartanburg, SC 29303
  • WHEN  Monday, May 7, 2012 @ 6:30PM
  • COST  Free!
  • REGISTER  Register by clicking HERE (or copy and paste the following link in your browser: http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07e5t6whz58877d009&llr=yy4cltcab)
  • WHO IS INVITED? You are!
  • CHILDCARE  Provided (birth thru 6th grade)

Who’s coming?

Read recent posts

Sangl Home Pay-Off Spectacular – May 2012

Every month there will be an update of Joe & Jenn’s Home Pay-Off Spectacular!

Here’s this month’s update!

Total Squares:  2,426

Paid-For Squares:  1130   1150

Squares Remaining:  1296   1276

% of House Owned By The Sangl’s:  46.6% 47.4%

% of House Owned By Wells Fargo:  53.4%  52.6%

Here is the updated Sangl Home Pay-Off Spectacular (click to view large size)

We were able to color in another 20 squares this month!  That FIRES US UP!!!  Within the next three months we will “officially” own over 50-percent of the house.  That is an amazing day!  Even so, the interest component of our regular house payment still accounts for 60-percent of the overall payment!  Think about that for a minute – do YOU know how much of your payment is just going to pay the bank interest?  If you’ve just started out on a 30-year mortgage, chances are that it is 95-percent or more of your overall payment.  Just one more reason my bride and I are so hyper-focused on eliminating this note!

How are you doing on YOUR house pay-off spectacular?

If you do not have one, you can get one here => Pay Off Spectacular – House.

Read previous Sangl Home Pay-Off Spectacular Updates

Read recent posts