The new year is coming up! Also, I’m very pleased to have just passed a small milestone in regards to my student loans — yay, me!
Tl;dr version: completely paid off one of the smallish loans — only two to go now!
Long version: I officially have three student loans… two smallish ones that consist of two individual loan tokens each; and a much, much larger loan that consists of eight loan tokens amalgamated together. Admittedly, I don’t know why they’re called loan ‘tokens’ — they’re really just another student loan as far as I can tell — but that’s their terminology, so I’m sticking to it for ease of conversation.
The multiple loans are due to having to take out new loans at different times during my studies. For example, during my master’s program, if I’m remembering correctly, I took out yearly loans, each consisting of a subsidized loan token, and an unsubsidized one. During the doctoral program it was a mix: sometimes FAFSA gave me a yearly loan and sometimes it was at the beginning of each semester. I don’t know why that is, but that’s how I’ve ended up with a grand total of twelve individual student loan tokens, all collected together into three loans.
The two smallish individual loans, and a handful of the amalgamated loans, all have the highest interest rate of 6.80%. The rates go down from that ‘standard’: 6.21%, then 5.84%, and then 5.41%. The lowest rates, of course, are for the master’s program, and the higher ones for the PhD. Initially it mattered whether the loan tokens were subsidized by the government or not. However, now that my official grace period has passed, subsidization is no longer relevant. What’s most important to me now is to pay off the loan tokens by interest rate. I want to pay off the highest interest rate ones first, so they’re gone by the time the pandemic’s student loan repayment pause is ended.
SO! That’s enough background — now the happy-making stuff! First, to all the lovely folks who were so kind as to generously gift me money for student loan repayments for Christmas, my birthday, and all the other holiday celebrations: thank you so very, very much! I simply could not have done it without you all.
Second: about halfway through the last year I reached a small milestone that pleased me immensely: I’ve now paid off half of my total loan tokens! Further, in this last month I completely paid off one of the smallish loans — so I now have only two student loans to go.
Yay! This is a very nice way to start my new year.