5 Tips for Making University Cheaper
Paying for college is expensive. College prices are continuing to increase. Although university costs average just over $7,000 per year in Australia (significantly lower than the $13, 856 in the United States), the cost can be a lot to handle for college students.
Parents may be tempted to help out by taking a second mortgage out or taking out loans, but there are better ways.
Here are a few ways you can help make college more affordable for your student (or yourself):
Start saving early
The best way to prepare for college is to begin saving early. Even investing in a moderate-interest money-market account for 10-15 years will give you a sizable amount to put towards education. In most cases, you can invest in these types of funds tax free. Saving for college in advance is the best way to fund a college education because you have more time to save up the money.
The competition amongst schools has really heated up over the last couple of years. Especially with the explosion of online studies, this impart has made education a bit cheaper in some instances. Think about getting your qualifications via an online course.
Apply for grants/scholarships
Talk to the local schools to get more information about grants and scholarships available. There are usually a variety of options ranging from financial need grants to academic and sports. Begin researching a year or more before college so you can apply as early as possible. Check online to find detailed listings of available scholarships and grants available.
College students can work through college. Is it glamourous? Not usually. But, it’s money. That extra money can be used to help pay for housing, food and other college expenses. Most students can even get part-time jobs on campus so they can work around their school schedule. Working through college will take a bit of concentration and sacrifice, but when you graduate from college without debt, it will be worth it.
While loans are not the best option, they are much safer than taking out a second-mortgage. Student loans tend to have lower interest rates than traditional loans and may not have to be paid back until after the student graduates from college.
Australian law allows students to head to college practically for free, at least until they start to work. Once they begin work the amount owed is based off of how much you earn. While this sounds fine in theory, it can be pretty difficult once you have graduated and you don’t have a plan for paying back these loans. Saving up as much money as possible while attending college will help alleviate this payment once you begin working.
In addition, the law says that graduates working oversea don’t have to pay while they are working out of the country, but interest rates can kick in, increasing the amount of debt owed quickly. The average Australian takes about 9 years to pay back student loans, but delays in payment could increase the amount owed and the time it takes to pay back the loan.
Finding other ways to fund your education will allow you (or your student) to enter the workforce with less stress. You can graduate college without debt, if you are willing to work a little harder and make a few sacrifices.