HealingTouch23

2+ Year Member
Jun 13, 2016
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Pharmacy Student
So as a pharmacist in 2017, how long could it take to pay off student loans? How are you managing your student loans?

I'm graduating soon and am looking for advice.
 

Rouelle

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Jan 7, 2011
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That kinda depends on how much you took out in loans, your living situation, how aggressively you plan to repay, etc. There's not really a cookie cutter answer here.

I paid mine off in 4 months. Some people are looking at 10-15 years. Some never took out loans.
 
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HealingTouch23

HealingTouch23

2+ Year Member
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That kinda depends on how much you took out in loans, your living situation, how aggressively you plan to repay, etc. There's not really a cookie cutter answer here.

I paid mine off in 4 months. Some people are looking at 10-15 years. Some never took out loans.
In your situation, how did you manage to complete it in 4 years?
 

Rouelle

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In your situation, how did you manage to complete it in 4 years?
Correct, months not years.

1. I worked during the first part of my wife's school and she worked during the last part of mine. We only overlapped for about a year and a half.

2. I interned full time during the breaks and part time (10-20) hours per week during school. My wife and I tutored undergrads on nights and weekends. I donated plasma twice weekly (great study time).

3. I got a performance based scholarship after my first year that knocked about 15% off my yearly tuition.

4. We lived within our means (lots of PB&Js, etc)
 

Niosh

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I had ~170k (much higher than I wanted for various reason) from undergrad through PharmD. My auto payment schedule put me at 30 years repayment at ~1000/month and like another 200k in interest. I had been paying extra at about 1900/month and that had me done in 10 years. I have since gone to REPAYE with PSLF as the end goal which will still have me done in 10 years, but save like 10k or so.

Edit: Just to add, OT is not available where I work and I have no intentions of picking up a second job. I also have a family with kids. Changing these things I (or you) could pay back loans significantly faster.
 
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6GodPharm

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Jul 13, 2016
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Sacrafice. I started close to 180k and i'm at about 85k right now. Started in Jan 16'. It helps to live in CA where you're hourly so OT and DT do help a lot even if taxes are higher. Right now Biweekly i'm taking home over 6k each paycheck (reached limit on some taxes). I'm sending majority of that to my loan. Does it hurt to see people making 40k a year with no loans live more freely than me right now? Yes! But I have my eyes on the prize. Getting this loan wiped out and then making 200k a year and it all hitting the bank account. Stay focused, pick up shifts, sleep on big purchases and you'll be ok.
 

a student

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Sacrafice. I started close to 180k and i'm at about 85k right now. Started in Jan 16'. It helps to live in CA where you're hourly so OT and DT do help a lot even if taxes are higher. Right now Biweekly i'm taking home over 6k each paycheck (reached limit on some taxes). I'm sending majority of that to my loan. Does it hurt to see people making 40k a year with no loans live more freely than me right now? Yes! But I have my eyes on the prize. Getting this loan wiped out and then making 200k a year and it all hitting the bank account. Stay focused, pick up shifts, sleep on big purchases and you'll be ok.
Same situatuon here but I'm taking home less than 4k per paycheck, how much OT do you work?
 

Momus

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Apr 2, 2008
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Every 100k loan, you can probably pay it off in 1.5 yrs give or take, depending how frugal you are or how many OT/per diem jobs you do. (Assuming 140k salary/yr which is about 85-90k take home).

You will always have loans IF you live in high COLA anyway, you next house loan is gonna be in 500-900k for a little 3BR. Welcome to the real world.
 

TerryTerry

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Jan 27, 2017
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Considering you didn`t receive any private loan, apparently anytime between 4 months and 20 years.
 

TerryTerry

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Jan 27, 2017
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Correct, months not years.

1. I worked during the first part of my wife's school and she worked during the last part of mine. We only overlapped for about a year and a half.

2. I interned full time during the breaks and part time (10-20) hours per week during school. My wife and I tutored undergrads on nights and weekends. I donated plasma twice weekly (great study time).

3. I got a performance based scholarship after my first year that knocked about 15% off my yearly tuition.

4. We lived within our means (lots of PB&Js, etc)
This doesn`t explain much at all.
 

6GodPharm

2+ Year Member
Jul 13, 2016
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Same situatuon here but I'm taking home less than 4k per paycheck, how much OT do you work?
Each weeks is roughly
40 reg hours
10-15 OT hours (1.5 x hourly rate)
1-3 DT hours (2x your hourly rate)

Times all that by 2 per paycheck.

It also helps my hourly rate is high.

Working 13 hour shifts help. I mostly work those. If i'm working the weekend I try to make it to where my Saturday is all OT for that week so the Saturday is more enjoyable knowing the rate is well over $100/hr. Toy with your schedule.
 

Sine Cura

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My generic advice is that if you don't have a family (especially kids), don't have significant health issues, and don't have significant "living expenses" you can take care of 200k in loans (including any interest that's accumulated by the time you pay off the loans) very quickly. 3-4 years if you are very cheap and have good income, increase time to payoff to account for other factors.

For example I worked 33 months before paying off ~200k (including the interest that accumulated). In 2016 (living in California and averaging ~41 hours worked per week) I made 100k net after 401k/HSA/FICA/income taxes, with $16,700 of that going to housing, $18,000 going to food, "lifestyle" expenses and health care, and $64,620 going to loan payments ($5,385/mo).

If you combine $16,700 and $18,000, spending $2,891 a month in after-tax income is not exactly being stingy.
 

mfdoom

2+ Year Member
Dec 23, 2014
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Each weeks is roughly
40 reg hours
10-15 OT hours (1.5 x hourly rate)
1-3 DT hours (2x your hourly rate)

Times all that by 2 per paycheck.

It also helps my hourly rate is high.

Working 13 hour shifts help. I mostly work those. If i'm working the weekend I try to make it to where my Saturday is all OT for that week so the Saturday is more enjoyable knowing the rate is well over $100/hr. Toy with your schedule.
Is this for retail in CA?
 

6GodPharm

2+ Year Member
Jul 13, 2016
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Yeah, I work in CA too but I don't bring home anywhere near that amount. Sometimes I think I'm hyped and ready to work OT, but when the end of the day rolls around, the only thing I want to do is rush home and lie on the couch.
This time of year I hit 6k easily because I met tax limits. First part i'm stuck around 5-5.5k because I get taxed a lot. I get almost 700-1K taken out for Fed OASDI/EE on each paycheck until I hit that limit.
 

a student

7+ Year Member
Mar 6, 2012
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Each weeks is roughly
40 reg hours
10-15 OT hours (1.5 x hourly rate)
1-3 DT hours (2x your hourly rate)

Times all that by 2 per paycheck.

It also helps my hourly rate is high.

Working 13 hour shifts help. I mostly work those. If i'm working the weekend I try to make it to where my Saturday is all OT for that week so the Saturday is more enjoyable knowing the rate is well over $100/hr. Toy with your schedule.
Ah.. 13 hour shifts. My store is so crazy I'm usually exhausted by the end of my 8 hour shift. I only pick up 6th day shifts.
 

Wickett

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Mar 28, 2012
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So as a pharmacist in 2017, how long could it take to pay off student loans? How are you managing your student loans?

I'm graduating soon and am looking for advice.
What worked for me was figuring out my average weekly pay vs weekly expenses and paying a set amount the same day each week. I pay 1100 every Thursday like clockwork....paying more often and beyond the minimum really helps you bring down the loan principal as opposed to most of it going to interest.

Pay by individual loan group, not overall account, starting with your higher loan amounts and interest levels. By my plan, I will pay mine off in 30 months. Amounts will vary based off income and living costs, but sticking to a systematic method keeps me on schedule.
 
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JanuviaGrl

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Aug 13, 2010
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Can pay them off really fast if you're in a relationship. One income to the cost of living, the other to the loans
This is exactly what I did. Worked quite well for me!


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HealingTouch23

HealingTouch23

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Jun 13, 2016
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Thank you everyone for the advice so far, did anyone also live at home? I imagine that would save a lot of money and help with the repayment process?

Also it bothers me that as pharmacists, we have trouble paying student loans. I'm just thinking of my family members that are graduating college soon and who may not have the luxury of having a good income right away, to pay off loans. x.x
 

Sine Cura

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I do live at home but I ended up assuming mortgage payments...
 

DavidIR

2+ Year Member
Mar 2, 2016
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I paid off my student loans early twice - once for undergrad and once for grad. I did it on a low income and am still very proud of having been able to do it.

Here are my tips:

1) At first just make the payments, but don't look at the total because it'll feel impossible and depressing.
2) To stay positive I made a game out of it. If I had any extra funds, I'd send in an extra payment. It really does add up.
3) The good news is that, once you get going, the amount starts coming down fast. I was amazed how, after a slow start, it snowballed. At this point it's fine to look at the diminishing balance and celebrate!

Good luck!
 

iggles

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May 11, 2011
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Go on repaye for the sweet sweet interest subsidies (your effective interest rate is likely between 4-6%). Take all the money you'd use to pay your loans and put it all in some ETFs. When you have enough money in your investment account to pay off your loans (including taxes) take it out and pay it off. You can do it in a lump sum or take out portions yearly for tax efficiency. If you lose your job you're safe because your still on an IBR plan so you won't need to worry about making payments for your period of unemployment. If the market takes a downturn just keep buying more ETFs or hold your money in a HYSA. If you land a hospital job in the meantime stay on REPAYE for 10 years and get your loans forgiven with PSLF. Paying off your loans isn't a race its a marathon. Keep level headed, take your emotions out of the equation, and let your money do the work for you in the market.
 

BMBiology

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Go on repaye for the sweet sweet interest subsidies (your effective interest rate is likely between 4-6%). Take all the money you'd use to pay your loans and put it all in some ETFs. When you have enough money in your investment account to pay off your loans (including taxes) take it out and pay it off. You can do it in a lump sum or take out portions yearly for tax efficiency. If you lose your job you're safe because your still on an IBR plan so you won't need to worry about making payments for your period of unemployment. If the market takes a downturn just keep buying more ETFs or hold your money in a HYSA. If you land a hospital job in the meantime stay on REPAYE for 10 years and get your loans forgiven with PSLF. Paying off your loans isn't a race its a marathon. Keep level headed, take your emotions out of the equation, and let your money do the work for you in the market.
If there is a recession, your ETFs are going to tank and you may also loss your job. You don’t have to keep on paying your loans then but in the meantime interest will keep on adding up.

It is not worth it. You need to make 9% per year (pre tax) return in order to get 7% return. You are taking all of that risk of a measly %. This bull market will end and the tide will go down. It is then we will know who is swimming without any clothes.


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iggles

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May 11, 2011
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If there is a recession, your ETFs are going to tank and you may also loss your job. You don’t have to keep on paying your loans then but in the meantime interest will keep on adding up.

It is not worth it. You need to make 9% per year (pre tax) return in order to get 7% return. You are taking all of that risk of a measly %. This bull market will end and the tide will go down. It is then we will know who is swimming without any clothes.


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I see people re-financing through private lenders (which I think is way more risky) for an extra couple of % all the time and nobody seems to bat an eye.

You're also underestimating the interest subsidies with repaye. No interest capitalization and half of your outstanding interest is covered past year 3 (50-100% covered for first 3 years depending on your loan types). Unless the market completely crashes in the next 3-5 years you likely will break even at worst or make an extra 30k+ at best.

Even if OP decides to pay off his loans ASAP it doesn't hurt one bit to be on REPAYE and starting the forgiveness clock right when he graduates should things not go the way he plans. For the first year on REPAYE you use last years tax returns (since he was a student this will be $0/month). Save that money in the bank if you're afraid of a market downturn and let the government pay off the interest on your loans while you assess your options.
 
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