Government help consolidating student loans

(For Talbert, there’s little downside to consolidating her loans, but that’s not always the case.Read more about that here.) “You don’t want to be surprised years later if you switch jobs and were planning to have your loans forgiven…

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only to find out that you don’t qualify,” Ferastoaru says.

There are some important ongoing steps in pursuing PSLF that Talbert needs to be aware of.

Student loan borrowers tend be young and inexperienced when it comes to debt, credit, and even basic budgeting.

That can make the transition to repayment after graduation challenging at best.

Teachers often qualify for multiple loan-forgiveness programs.

The best known are the federal government’s 10-year Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program, designed for any public sector employee, and the federal Teacher Loan Forgiveness program, which forgives up to ,500 after five consecutive years of teaching in schools that serve low-income students.Jessica Ferastoaru, a student loan counselor with Take Charge America, recommends Talbert and other potential applicants fill out the form every year, or at a minimum, any time they change jobs.“You don’t want to be surprised years later if you switch jobs and were planning to have your loans forgiven…She spent a year taking classes at a community college before transferring to the University of South Carolina-Columbia.She thought she wanted to be a nurse but quickly discovered science wasn’t her strong suit.Talbert has 17 individual loans, and only some of them automatically qualify for the income-driven plans that lead to loan forgiveness.

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