When I was in nursing school there were several student loan mistakes I made. If you want to know more about how I ended up here, please check it out. The cliff notes version is this: I got carried away with student loans while in college. The worst part is that I didn’t even realize what I was getting into. Yeah, you can make fun of me, call me naive, whatever you want. I’m not looking for handouts – I’m just complaining. I’m also guessing that if you’re reading this that you have perhaps also made the same or similar student loan mistakes.

I Didn’t Understand The Terms Of My Student Loans

Deferred, fixed payment, or interest repayment? I’m not sure what those mean but I want my money. Seriously though, I had no idea what the repercussions of either of those options had meant. When I got to know my debt I was left wondering why the student loans were paying were MORE than what I had originally taken out.  Let me break it down a little:

  • Interest Deferred: While attending school, no there will be no payments due. When the bills appear, all interest during the loan will be added on to the principal. Don’t do this option! This payment option can end up costing you thousands of dollars more!
  • Fixed Repayment: This option requires a person to pay a small monthly amount while they’re in school. Because payments are being made the total loan amount when graduation occurs will likely be lower. This student loan option will make sense if you can afford the monthly payments.
  • Interest Repayment Option: While in school, you will be on the hook for ONLY the interest payments on you student loan. When you graduate your student loan will not have any additional interest added on to your loan. If you can afford it, this is your best option at saving you money on student loans.

Interest Deferred Student Loans

Because I didn’t understand how student loans operated, I screwed myself over. When I was in nursing school I was coasting through life not even thinking about my student loans. Then the debt repayments started. Yeah, those suck. Then I got to know my debt. After that I realized I was making payments on loans that cost way more than what I took out for.

Student LoanStarting Loan BalanceCurrent Loan Balance
ALPN$11,173.18$15,188.48
Chase #3 $18,643.89$21,180.29

These are two student loans I have where the balance is significantly more than what I started with. This is what happens with an interest deferred option.

I Could Have Cut Down My Expenses

For a while, my spending was out of control. Since I had the money through student loans, I kind of lost sight as to what I would spend money on. In essence, I was spending money like I already had a career. I was also renting a one bedroom apartment at the time. I really could have cut my expenses in half by getting a roommate. For three years of my schooling though I was living alone. By the time I got a roommate, it was already too late and my massive student loan debt had already accumulated.

Your Student Loan Mistakes?

Not understanding student loan repayment options was the biggest mistake I made. To be honest, I feel like a schmuck for it. So that’s why I’m here to tell you not to do the same thing as me.  If you’re struggling with student loan debt like me, what do you think some of the biggest mistakes you made were? What would you tell to future students about student loans?