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Living on a Budget, Saving Money/How to live on my own with debt


  I would like guidance in which school loan plan I should choose, not just for the purpose of paying less interest, but also to weigh in what my odds are for getting a better loan for a 2 bedroom house down the road.

Background: I just got a job working as a New Grad Registered Nurse where I'll be making ~$50k annually.  I am 32 yrs old living with my parents, sharing a room with my seven year old daughter!  I would like to move out asap, BUT I have ~$20k in credit card debt (which got me through nursing school) and ~53K in school loans which I have to start paying next month.  Before I move out, I'd like to pay as much of my credit card debt down as possible, so maybe I can be out by next summer?

With that being said, which school loan do you think I should choose with the anticipation of me having a lease/rent next year too which will probably be ~$1300 tops and possible loan forgiveness plans in the future? (FYI, I will have to start paying $400 in rent to my parents next month also.)

Standard: 120 payments of $574 ($14,918 interest $68,792 total)

Graduated: 24 payments of each - $383, $469, $574, $703, $860 ($17,775 interest $71.649)

Extended: 300 payments of $318 ($41,270 interest $95,144 total)

Extended Graduate: 24 payments each - $228, $244, $261, $289, $299, $320, $342, $366, $392, $419, $448, $480, and then 12 payments of $513 ($50,033 interest, $103,907)

Thank you so much!

Hi CJ:

Thank you so much for choosing me to assist you on your financial journey. If I understand you correctly you want to know the best possible repayment plan of 53K in student loans. It sounds like you have done your homework and you understand where you stand as it relates to your debt versus income.

My first recommendation is to look at all the numbers you presented from a percentage view. For example, if your net pay is 3,600 then 1,300 would be 27%. You can calculate all your expenses against your income to see where each stands. When you plug in your three repayment options, you can see what each option would look like as it relates to short term and long term goals. You will then have enough information to make a decision and begin paying your debt as agreed.  

My second recommendation is for you to plan not to go further into debt by borrowing money. Develop a strategy to save money to cash flow upcoming additional expenses. For example, moving expenses, furnishing your new place, child care etc…  

It sounds like you are concerned with the fact your debt is bigger than your annual income and you are ready to do something about it.

Thank you for being proactive, I hope this helps.

E.B. Joseph

Living on a Budget, Saving Money

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Ericka Joseph


The budget is a guaranteed way to track your money and develop money discipline. I am open to answering any questions which concern customization of a budget and using tools to help you stay discipline. I will also answer about creating and maintaining an emergency fund. Although I can speak about long-term financial planning and investing, I will choose to only focus on the fundamentals I use for my financial success, at this time.


I have achieved every financial goal I have set in the last 14 years to include being debt free in the last eight years. I teach my budget class online on Udemy.


I am a retired U.S. Marine of over 20 years. I am the CEO of Plan2Win Solutions, LLC and currently a Homeschool Mom. I hold a BA in Psychology from Chapman University of Orange, CA and AA in Business Administration from Strayer University of Washington, DC.

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