Cancel Student Loans to Save — and Receive an Interest-Free 120-Day Loan

Cancel Student Loans to Save — and Receive an Interest-Free 120-Day Loan

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Student loan debt is everywhere in the information. There are issues that student loans is perhaps the subsequent “bubble” and finger pointing by Congress, universities, and naturally, students. There’s numerous blame to go round, however on the finish of the day, you’re the one who has to repay the debt. So, what’s a simple option to have much less debt?

Return cash you do not want. In federal loan lingo, it is referred to as “canceling” your loan. (See additionally: Student Loans: How to Make Post-College Decisions)

Buried deep within the Federal Loan paperwork, there is a provision that tells you, “before your loan money is disbursed, you may cancel all or part of your loan at any time by notifying your school.”

But this is the higher deal — “Within 120 days of the date your school disbursed your loan money (by crediting the loan money to your account at the school, by paying it directly to you, or both), you may return all or part of your loan to us.”

So Why Would You Want to Return Part of Your Loan?

You need to return (aka cancel) your student loan as a result of then you do not have to pay curiosity — even again curiosity that accrued because you took out the loan. Here’s the official language:

You don’t have to pay curiosity or the loan charge on the a part of your loan that you simply return inside 120 days of the date that a part of your loan is disbursed. If you obtained an up-front curiosity rebate in your loan, the rebate doesn’t apply to the a part of your loan that you simply return. Your loan will probably be adjusted to get rid of any curiosity, loan charge, and rebate quantity that applies to the quantity of the loan that you simply return.

Any unsubsidized federal student loan begins accruing curiosity instantly, so the earlier you possibly can pay again the cash the higher. And with Grad PLUS loan rates of interest at 7.9% and origination charges of 4.0%, each $100 you come back is saving you just about $12 in the present day (and extra because the curiosity compounds). So once you get all curiosity accrued and costs paid returned to you, you’ve got now received a 120-day interest-free loan.

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Why You Would Need to Cancel Part of Your Loan

Now, I’d by no means advocate taking out an interest-free loan for 120 days only for the sake of taking it. Instead, there are two actually good causes to cancel your loan.

1. You Took Out Too Much Money

One of the problems with student loans is that it is exhausting to determine how massive of a loan you want and straightforward to take out an excessive amount of cash. At the start of the varsity yr once you make your loan elections, you would possibly suppose you want $5,000 of spending cash throughout the second semester, however by the point the loan will get dispersed in January, you understand you solely want $3,000. Instead of blowing the additional $2,000 on garments or rounds of drinks to your pals, do the accountable factor and cancel this cash you do not want.

2. You Get Extra Money or Are Working During School

Many students (particularly graduate students) work whereas going to highschool. So take a part of your earnings for the primary few months of every semester and use it return a part of your loan cash. Or maybe you bought fortunate and obtain an inheritance or some sudden birthday money. Instead of spending all of it, cancel your loans and get your curiosity and costs again.

How to Cancel Your Loan

I’ve canceled a number of students loans due to incomes extra by working or taking out an excessive amount of cash within the first place. (One semester, my tuition dropped attributable to course load changes, so I used to be in a position to return a big a part of a loan.) I’ve used the next two strategies to cancel my loans.

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1. Contact Your School’s Financial Services Office

The best option to cancel your loan is to contact your faculty’s monetary companies workplace and ask them to cancel all or a part of your loan. If the cash has solely been disbursed to your student account (and never all the best way to your private checking account), the varsity can simply take the cash again and return it to the federal government.

2. Contact the Direct Loan Servicing Center

If the loan has already been disbursed to your private account out of your faculty’s student account, you will most definitely must contact the Federal Direct Loan Servicing Center. My expertise has been that they may inform you to ship within the cash to a fee handle or “make a payment” on-line; then you definitely’ll need to observe up and inform them that they cash was for a cancellation. I like to recommend calling them at 1-800-848-0979 and never emailing via Always use the time period “cancellation” or “cancel.” (I’ve had a number of experiences with e mail the place the e-mail reply has been that they made the adjustment, however the curiosity in my account nonetheless confirmed, leading to me having to observe up a number of instances. Calling has all the time resulted within the cancellation exhibiting the primary time.)

This student loan hack solely works for federal loans and makes essentially the most sense to make use of for unsubsidized loans the place curiosity is accruing from day one. But it is a good way to reduce your debt burden after you end faculty.

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Have you ever canceled a loan inside the 120-day interval? What hacks have you ever used to lighten your student loan debt?