If you don’t think you meet the requirements, don’t worry – as you can apply with a cosigner to increase your chances of getting approved for a better student loan.
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Similarly, the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program is available for teachers who work in schools that serve low-income families full-time for five consecutive years.
These are clearly great programs for people who choose careers in public service or education, but if that’s not you, they won’t do you any good.
There are also a number of federal loan repayment plans that can ease the burden for borrowers facing tough economic times.
For example, the government’s Pay As You Earn (PAYE) and Income-Based Repayment (IBR) programs allow borrowers to make reduced monthly payments based on financial hardship.
My monthly payments, all added together, ended up being right around 0 a month. Consolidation has worked well for me, and it can work well for many students, as long as you understand the risks.