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Student Loans: Use Your Cash Or Take The Loan?

At Your Smart Money Moves, we get questions that we get from clients, through the website, or others that I see on the internet.   Here is a great one I recently came across around student loans.

Q: I have about $40,000 saved up with an additional $6,000 in liquid assets that I am using as my emergency fund.  I’m attending graduate school, which will cost me about $50,000 by the time it’s over.  I will be working full time for the years of graduate school, so I believe that I will be able to save the extra $10,000 by the time I need to pay for it.    Should I pay the tuition out of pocket, or take out a low interest student loan at 5%?   I may be wanting to put a down payment on a house in the next five years, but I don’t want to begin accruing interest on student loans that I don’t necessarily have to incur.

A: You can always kid yourself that there will be some bigger and better investment for your money because the interest rates on the money you are borrowing will be cheap.   People often ask this same type of question when they consider paying off their house.   Your bank account is likely earning less than .5% right now and your student loan interest rate is going to be more than that when you borrow the money.   I’m not a big fan of letting the tax tail wag the dog, so I would use your cash to pay for graduate school using the cash.   The question about you buying a home or note probably won’t be able to be settled until you graduate school and see where you land in the job market with your new degree.  For all you know, it could be in another city with lower or higher cost of living and this could change your view on buying a home.    I wouldn’t be as quick today to get into home ownership until you view all of the costs of home ownership and your overall budget.   Do yourself a favor and pay for the tuition and start your work life debt free.

Go to www.oxygenfinancial.net to request a consultation with the leading financial experts for people in their 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s in the country.

Written by:

Ted Jenkin, CFP®, AAMS®, AWMA®, CRPC®, CMFC®, CRPS®

Co-CEO and Founder of oXYGen Financial, Inc

Ted Jenkin is one of the foremost knowledgeable professionals in giving financial advice and Smart Money Moves to the X and Y Generation.

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About the author  ⁄ Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Ted Jenkin @ Your Smart Money Moves

Hey!

My friends and family all think I’m a workaholic, but I say I’m just a guy that loves to help people do better in life.

My mother is still the only one that calls me by my real name Theodore Michael, my wife calls me Teddy, but for the rest of you it is just plain old Ted.

Ever since I was a little kid, I always loved money and being an entrepreneur. In fact, I still have cassette tapes of me talking to my grandmother at the age of five and my mother tells me all the time how much I played with money as a kid...

Read More About Ted Here

Ted Jenkin is a frequent guest columnist for the Wall Street Journal and Headline News Weekend Express. He is the co-CEO of oXYGen Financial. You can follow him on LinkedIn @ www.linkedin.com/in/theceoadvisor or on Twitter @tedjenkin.

Securities offered through Kestra Investment Services, LLC (Kestra IS), member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through Kestra Advisory Services, LLC (Kestra AS), an affiliate of Kestra IS. oXYGen Financial is not affiliated with Kestra IS or Kestra AS. Kestra IS and Kestra AS do not provide tax or legal advice.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and may not necessarily reflect those held by Kestra Investment Services, LLC or Kestra Advisory Services, LLC. This is for general information only and is not intended to provide specific investment advice or recommendations for any individual. It is suggested that you consult your financial professional, attorney, or tax advisor regarding your individual situation. 

Background and qualification information is available at FINRA's BrokerCheck website.

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