Mark wanted guidance on the best way to aggressively pay down his student loans and had questions about consolidation and refinancing – what’s the difference and which is better? He did not have credit card or other debt but had stopped his 401(k) contributions a while back to focus on debt.
A BrightDime coach asks Mark for the current interest rates on his student loans and whether they are Federal or private. They discuss the pros and cons of refinancing and consolidation, and the best way to pay off the debt with the least amount of interest.
Mark and the coach chat about why he stopped contributing to his 401(k) plan (to focus on debt) and the coach explains that investing in the plan will give an immediate return due to the company match. This is a great investment he can take advantage of while also paying down his low interest (4-6%) student debt.
Mark mentions his goal to buy a home. They discuss how student loans impact his credit score, his debt to income ratio and how much to start saving for a down payment. Mark wants to create a budget to ensure he meets this goal within 2-3 years.
Mark has a plan to pay off his student loans early and save lots of money in the long term. He re-enrolled in the 401(k) plan and is investing for his retirement while paying down debt. He also has a budget to follow to save for his goal of buying a home. We call that a success!