<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Layout:
Home > Archive: April, 2011
 

Archive for April, 2011

Student Loans

April 28th, 2011 at 02:01 pm

In honor of graduation on Monday I thought I would start this new financial journey with my student loans.

Spring of 2007 I started applying to pharmacy schools. DH is in the Navy and we knew that it was possible for us to be stationed in one of the four corners of the US (Hawaii, Washington State, Maine and Florida). At the time I wasn’t aware of a pharmacy school in Hawaii, I missed the requirements for the school in Washington state by 1 biology credit (did I mention I was a biochem major in undergrad…how did this happen?!?!) and I was accepted to a pharmacy schools in New Hampshire (the closest to Maine) and University of Florida.

If we ended up selecting Washington or Hawaii, I’d put pharmacy school off for a while or go into something else. The base in Maine was closing so we knew eventually DH would come back to Jacksonville if he was stationed there, but we were holding out hope he would get Jacksonville and we could live together. Well the DAY of orientation, during my lunch break, we found out that DH had been selected to go to Maine and be the first squadron to come back to Jacksonville. I remember asking him “so that means I’m going to stay here [at UF], right?”

So needless to say things were a little up in the air there for a while. We had no idea how much life would cost supporting two households or how much school stuff would cost or anything. So we decided to take all of the loans offered that first semester, both subsidized and unsubsidized. I took all of the ‘profit’ in our savings account. I say ‘profit’ because they give you a bunch of money, take out tuition and give you the rest to live on. Second semester we took out the subsidized loans and my in-laws offered to pay for tuition. For my second year we continued to take out the subsidized loans and then used that ‘profit’ from before to cover gaps. Each semester we took out the subsidized loans, but it didn’t quite cover tuition so after the ‘profit’ was gone we started setting aside $350 a month to save up for those tuition payments.

So now 4 years later I’ve got just over $44,000 in student loans which will continue to be on deferment until November (colleagues who took everything have 100K or more). Since I will be starting a residency, they can be put back on deferment. I’m not exactly sure for how long. My program lasts until June, so at least until then, but I’m not sure if I get another 6 month grace period or not. The unsubsidized loans are currently at 6.8%, and they all with be at that rate when the deferment ends.

Our goal is to pay it off in 5 years. However, I plan to put $1000 a month toward them, which, especially with deferment, should pay them off in about 4 years or so. The nice thing is that with our slush fund whenever we get sick of them we can just cut a check and be done with it. Probably not the best thing financially (paying higher interest than we are earning in our checking account), but liquidity and flexibility is key in the Navy.

On the cusp...

April 27th, 2011 at 12:17 am

So it's been a while since I've updated or written on this blog. Almost a year, I guess. DH and I are right on the cusp of a lot of big changes so I think now is a good time to jump back in.

First, I will be graduating from pharmacy school on Monday. It was a long, hard, fantastic 4 years and I wouldn't trade a second of it! Financially, I'll be leaving with student loans amounting to just over $44,000.

Second, DH and I both will be starting new jobs. DH is going back to be a flight school instructor and I was selected for a 1 year pharmacy residency position. DH will still be making 85-90K and my stipend for the year is 41K.

Next, these new jobs are no longer in Jax, but across the state. We will be there for about 3 years...and are buying an amazing house. We were supposed to close on Monday, but it was pushed back to Friday. (This time through the home buying process has been AWFUL, I'm sure I'll comment on it later). So we will be adding another $125K to our debt.

We are still keeping our current house and are renting it out to a girl I went to school with. She's signing a 1 year lease, but I hope she stays a little longer than that. If not, we have access to a decent sized pool of renters. Her rent covers all of our costs plus about $15 or $20 to save up for repairs.

This summer before my residency starts my goal is to re-evaluate our financial plan to make sure we are using our money to best meet our goals. I intend to post updates and possibilities and would love to get your input on it!