Your Questions About Debt-free Forever

Donald asks…

Go away to school with loans or stay home debt free.?

I am currently at a community college right now and have spent my first year of college there. I was planning on going away to school after this year but I’m not so sure anymore. I have always wanted to go away to school but my parents only set so much money aside for me somewhere between like 25/30 thousand. If I went away to school I would prob owe (with interest) somewhere between 40-50 thousand. If I stayed at community college and then went to a local state university I would graduate debt free. With the economy the way it is I’m not sure I would be able to pay off my loans. I am doing accounting with the hope of getting my CPA after so its not like it would be really really hard to find a job. People always tell me just to go away to school and take out loans because its the best time of your life but I still can’t decide if the next 3 years of my life is worth paying for the next 20 years but I know if I don’t do it I will regret it forever.
Please give me advice!

John answers:

My personal view is that you should go for it. Don’t worry about the money that you may owe. If you get a good degree and in turn get a good job, you will be able to pay back the bank and it need not be 20 years. If you pay the bank a monthly $500 that will be $6k a year. If I read your msg correctly, your parents had set aside $25k and you will probably need another $25k. Assuming $1k/month for your expenses, you will need like $36k for a 3 year course. So total around $60k. You should be able to pay the bank in 15 years. Don’t forget that you should get bonuses and your pay should not stay stagnant for all the 15 years. The most important thing is that you really have to focus when you are away as lack of discipline is the main concern when you are away from home.

Robert asks…

How can you forever waive credit cards’ annual fees?

I sooo wanna to close my credit cards that charge these annual fees, but that won’t be healthy for my credit (report). I asked for a waiver but that will be for this year only. These are debt-free cards, I want to close them the next time they charge me annual fees…Any suggestions?

John answers:

There are a lot of “normal” cards out there without an annual fee. Look at the American Express Blue for instance. With this one you can even have cash back or points for every dollar spent.

John asks…

Base a College Decision on Money or Interest in theSchool?

I’ve been accepeted to two colleges so far and am waiting to hear back from three more. Mount Saint Vincent offered me a $12,000 a year scholarship but I’m not sure if I really like it. Marymount Manhattan only gave me $2,000 a year but I love the school. Should I go to a school I love and pay off loans forever or go to a school I don’t like as much and be debt free?

John answers:

That’s actually a tough decision. You do want to go to a school that you like, because you’ll probably do better at a school that you like and that fits you than at a school that doesn’t fit – and doing well would be worth the cost of the loans. However, it’s not that you really dislike Mt. Saint Vincent, it’s that you’re not sure if you really like it. And $12,000 is a really good scholarship. I strongly suggest that you visit Mt. Saint Vincent and Marymount Manhattan again, in person. Meet with someone in admissions, take a campus tour, and wander around the campus yourself. Do things like sit on the grass, get lunch or a coffee at the cafeteria, etc. Just spend an afternoon there. See how you feel after that.

While you’re at Marymount, speak to the admissions person and to someone in financial aid. Tell them they are your first choice school, but that another school has offered you more, and you would love to go to Marymount instead but you probably can’t because you need more financial support then they offered. Maybe Marymount won’t give you $12,000, but they could actually bump up your scholarship amount. It’s possible. Perhaps enough that you feel less financially burdened going there. And if they do – then go.

George asks…

Debt out of Control!?

I am a single mom and have over 40k in credit card debt, unbelieveable but true. 2 years ago I was debt free with a credit score of over 700, then I went to graduate school, that was my debt downfall, although an academic and career uprise. I am trying to get out of debt within the next 2 years. I keep my personal expenses relatively low, but my debt payments eat all my money, the minimum payments are about $1600 a month! None of the credit card bills are delinquent but I only make minimum payments. I took a new job making a more $ so I could pay more than just the minimum to at least 2 cards a month, but I also have a baby on the way. I own a house, which I always pay late because my tenant pays late. Also the repairs to the house keep me drowning in debt. I have the opportunity to move in with my boyfriend rent free, but am skeptical because we aren’t married nor engaged and I don’t want to end up a girlfriend forever even though his offer will help me financially. THOUGHTS???
(FYI) It wasn’t grad school tuition that I charged to my credit cards, I took student loans for that, but I went to an Ivy League school that gave us many opportunities to travel as a group primarily at our own expense and I took those opportunities, which I charged to my cards!
Additionally I rarely eat out and brown bag breakfast and lunch to work everyday! there are no more costs for me to cut, unfortunately which is why I am looking for additional alternatives
Is that the catch to filing bankruptcy? the bills have to be delinquent at least 90 days? do you know how much money I can save in 90 days!!!

; ) Thank you for that advice, I called a bankruptcy lawyer and am waiting to see if I qualify.

John answers:

I just posted a technique on how to get out of debt on my blog. There are absolutely no adds.

Betty asks…

I have received 600,800 dollars in settlement. What should I do with it?

I am virtually debt free. I just want to know how to get the maximum out of this money. I want it to last forever.

John answers:

Talk to a accredited financial adviser. (ask your bank) and explain what you want to achieve with this money.

Most likely, if you want it to last forever, he will either suggest an annuity or a trust fund that pays you the dividends your money earns.

Be careful…. Nobody needs to know that you have this much money at your disposal. Especially not your cousins, uncles, nephews and long lost other relatives….

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2 Responses to Your Questions About Debt-free Forever

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