Hi Ms Savage,
I'm sure you have addressed this type of question before...However, what is the best way to pay these student loans off to decrease the interest charges? Thank you so much! Jackie
PS: I want to pay a little extra each month.

Current monthly payment due (09/08/2016): $880.32 for all loans

1-02 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$110.53 Payment Due

1-03 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$220.02 Payment Due

1-04 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$30.51 Payment Due

1-05 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$252.65 Payment Due

1-06 Direct Grad PLUS
$148.83 Payment Due

1-07 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$117.78 Payment Due
Total Current Balance: $77,636.91

Big picture:
All Loan Details
Loan Current Balance Interest Rate Due Date

1-02 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$9,486.96 / 6.800%

1-03 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$20,086.68 / 5.410%

1-04 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$2,785.86 /5.410%

1-05 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$22,256.15 / 6.210%

1-06 Direct Grad PLUS
$12,473.13 / 7.210%

1-07 Direct Loan - Unsubsidized
$10,548.13 /5.840%
I look forward to your advice :)

Terry Says:

Ordinarily, I might have taken out some of the extensive details you provided — just for space reasons.  But what a great picture you gave of the overwhelming burden of student loan debt!  I hope you think it was worth it!

I’m going to make the assumption that you have graduated college, and might even have a post-grad degree, AND that you are now employed and able to pay more.  If that’s correct, please go to www.SOFI.com — the place where successful grads can refi loans at a lower rate, and combine them into one payment.  But this is a private loan, based on your current job and income.

It means you are giving up some of the benefits of Federal student loans — the ability to ask for a deferment if your lose your job, or to access their income based repayment program.  And if you are in some form of social services, you might get complete forgiveness of your loan balance after paying on time for 10 years (by which time you are supposed to have it paid off anyway!)

So contact SoFi — and spend a little time reading this link to Finaid.org — so you can weigh the benefits of lower rates you might qualify for against these other Federal student loan provisions.   If you don’t want to refinance, or can’t get much of an interest rate break, then take your extra money and pay down the highest rate loans first, and also those with the smallest balances — so you feel like you’re making some progress!

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