Like most students, I graduated with thousands of dollars of student loan debts. Six months after graduation, all of those student loans came due and I had to start making several hundreds of dollars in payments every month. Luckily, I had already planned on a way to deal with all of the debt.
Low Bills, High Pay
The first thing I did to deal with my debt is something a lot of recent graduates are doing: moving abroad. I moved to Taiwan to teach English. Living on six hundred dollars or less a month meant that my income-around twenty thousand a year- stretched extremely far. Although twenty thousand is almost poverty level in America, in Asia it meant a good quality of life and a great deal of savings. I was able to put around five thousand dollars towards my student loan debt in my year of work and still save a little bit of money as an emergency fund so that I would never default.
Leaving the Island
Taiwan was not intended to be a permanent option, however. When I left to the island, I left a boyfriend behind and had to endure a year of talking on-line with the occasional phone call. After my return from Taiwan, I had to find a means of making my student loan payments. Student loans initially halted my plans to return home. Without a means of making my student loan payments, I would still be stuck working in Taiwan. Looking on-line, I started to research career options that I could do on my return to America. I discovered by chance Bright Hub.
Writing for Income
I started writing for income in November of 2010 and then joined with Bright Hub at the end of December 2010. Originally, my writing was just intended to create a side income to pay off student loans. As the income from on-line writing grew, I started considering just writing full time. I had the savings built up to ensure that I could write for six months without it being profitable and rent in America had gotten cheaper because of extra roommates. Currently, I am paying for my cheap rent-150 a month- and making my student loan payments through freelance writing. This option may not work for everyone (how many people can find rent that cheap?), but for me, it works. It means that I can live closer to my fiancé and work at my dream job.
The next step in my plan for making my student loan payments on time is to start teaching private English lessons again. Prior to my departure from Taiwan, I was teaching English lessons on the side for an extra four hundred dollars of income a month. Although I doubt I will be able to charge the same per hour in America, the side income would still be decent. The area I live in is populated by a population of migrant workers- one third of the county speaks Spanish as their primary language. Experienced teachers are in demand. Making my student loan payments on time and in advance is possible provided I plan ahead and consider where my next source of income comes from.