Student loans repayment begins after one of two things happens. If you graduate from school or if you fall below attendance at least half time, you will have to begin student loans repayment. Before having to start, you will have a grace period of six months to nine months depending on the type of loan you have. After the grace period is up student loans repayment begins. If the parent is the one who took out the loan, there is usually a smaller grace period of sixty days.
Prior to repayment, you will likely get some counseling from your lender or your college so that you are made fully aware of your upcoming responsibilities. It is important for people coming out of college to realize that student loans are a legitimate debt and they need to be taken seriously. Sometimes students are not used to having such a large debt and because it is guaranteed by the government they do not take it as seriously as a car or house payment. After all, they can not repossess your education. However, there are serious consequences to not taking student loans repayment seriously. If you continually pay your payments late or not at all your loan will be in default. If the loan becomes in default, there are several things that may occur. You can have your employment check garnished in order to pay for your loan. You may also have your income tax refund withheld to repay the loan. Regardless, there are serious consequences for defaulting on the loan. You will also have a report of delinquency on your credit report which may affect other purchases and even employment.
Student loans repayment can be difficult sometimes, though, and if you are having a problem, you can get assistance. There are several ways the government can assist so your credit score will not be damaged. Under certain situations, the loan can be discharged completely. This is rare, though and you should contact the Department of Education if you feel you may qualify. There are also plans which will let you stop paying with no penalty but the interest will be added to the end of the loan. The deferred payment will be more expensive but can help people in the short term. Once back in a financially sound situation, though, it is best to pay off as much of the loan as possible.