Student loans are a looming part of higher education that gives most prospective students a headache before they’ve even started the application process. Alas, prospective and former students rejoice—here are some tips for paying off your loans quickly.

  1. Know what you’re getting into. Make sure you read up on your loan and the interest rates that will apply. Never ignore your impending loan, either. They don’t (unfortunately) just disappear.
  2. If possible, pay off large chunks early on. Obviously this is the ideal option, but also one that isn’t possible for everyone. If you are able to make this work, however, you’ll avoid paying higher interest charges in the long-run. Regardless of how much you pay each month, it should ideally be more than the recommended minimum payment.
  3. Begin paying it off immediately. Again this relates to point number three and paying less interest in the long run. The grace period is definitely nice, but if you don’t need to utilize it, then don’t.
  4. Plan, plan, and plan some more. It’s always best to create some sort of plan for paying off your debt. Whether you’re working with a financial advisor or on your own, definitely try to develop some sort of plan to help make things easier along the way.

Image via Clark & Washington.