Obtaining a college education can increase your potential income by upwards of 25 percent. According to a NATSEM report; those graduating with bachelor degrees earned more than any other education categories in the beginning stages of their working life.
Although getting a college education is essential to securing most well-paying jobs, getting into debt for school will make it much more difficult to get started on your road to financial freedom, once you graduate from college. On average, Australians will pay almost $9,000 per semester for college tuition; averaging two semesters per year and four years of college that’s a total of $72,000. That’s a load of debt to start out with, when you find an entry level job. So, instead of jumping on the debt train right after college, here are a few other ways you could finance your education:
Get a job: Going to school full time and working a job may sound like a lot of work, and it is. But, when you graduate from college with little to no debt, you’ll be able to use your hard earned income to buy a car, a nice home and anything else you want, without having to worry about paying back student loans.
If working and going to school full-time simply isn’t feasible, consider working part-time or going to school part-time for a more manageable schedule.
Apply for grants and scholarships: Free money. No sweeter words were ever written. Depending on your financial situation, you could qualify for free college money. Students attending school outside their native country often qualify for international student grants. Check out the Australia Education website to learn more specifics about grants available and how to apply.
Another way to get free money for college education is to apply for scholarships. Most universities offer academic scholarships, which require you to maintain a minimum grade point average to qualify. Depending on the university you attend, you could have your entire tuition or part of your tuition paid for with scholarship money.
Go to a cheaper college: Maybe you have your heart set on a specific university, but if that university is completely out of your budget, you could end up with a $100,000 in debt, or more. Instead of paying a premium price for your education, consider going to a cheaper college. You may be able to qualify for residency discounts or alumni discounts if your parents when to the same college. Another option is to attend your first two years of college at a cheaper college (where you’ll most likely complete the same general education requirements at a lower price), and transfer to the more expensive university for the last half of your education.
Live at home: While living away from home for college is part of the charm, it can also be extremely expensive. Living at home lets you save money you would have otherwise spent on rent, laundry and even food. If living at home isn’t an option, look for more affordable housing and get a roommate.
You can go to college without building up a ton of debt. Even if you have to take out some loans, you can reduce the loan amounts you have to take out by implementing one or more of the above tips. Learn about other ways to control costs and live on the cheap without sacrificing quality of life.