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how much of loan to take?

Discussion in 'Financial Aid' started by o0rikio0o, May 12, 2008.

  1. o0rikio0o

    5+ Year Member

    Sep 15, 2007
    Likes Received:
    so my school reported back to me that they can give me:

    subsidized stafford: $8,500
    unsubs stafford: $26,881

    my economic scenario is that i have about $15k saved up in the bank total. i live with my parents and my school is 30 mins away. i own 2 cars, one of which i plan to sell before i start med school (~$3k). i pay for my own car & health insurance, leisure expenses, and gas (here in honolulu its $$$). i dont pay rent and i dont pay any of the utility or grocery bills (god bless my parents). my yearly tuition at my school is ~$22k a year. i will not have a job while in med school.

    i will obviously take all of the subsidized loan, but should i take all of the unsubsidized loan? or should i take something like $20k of it? how much is enough so that i dont have to sacrifice selling my things on ebay to get me by? i'm not the type of guy that spends freely, but then again im the type of guy that likes treat himself to a nice thing once in a while.

    any opinions out there? words of wisdom?
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  3. surfstarj

    2+ Year Member

    Jul 23, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Medical Student
    I can't say this is words of wisdom since I am currently going through the same process but here is what I have done so far in my consideration:

    1) figured out tuition+ fees+ books + supplies for the year, made sure that was covered. ;)
    2) made up a monthly budget for my expenses like rent, car insurance, avg gas, food, obviously you have some of these taken care of so that's good.
    3) added in a reasonable amount of extras, because, like you, i don't want to go through med school without ever being able to have some fun. So eating out once a week or 2ce a month (personal preference on how much you decide here)
    4) a little bit extra for emergencies like car repair, flight to see family if needed.

    It's up to you, but I think breaking down your expenses is a good start. Good luck.
  4. Twitch

    7+ Year Member

    Jun 17, 2004
    Likes Received:
    Medical Student
    Most of us go through the "how much should I take out" and it's good that you're being cautious about it.

    Here is one idea. Take a slice in time of representative spending say a month and see if you can figure out how much is your typical spending. A good way to aggregate is to use an excel spreadsheet. However if you do most of your spending on a CC than some offer category spending or there is software available that can analyze spending categories assuming they were coded correctly.

    The big expenses you're already aware of (e.g. tuition + fees). You need to get an idea of your living expenses at your current life style / spending pattern assuming you want to retain that. The fact that you're posting here and asking makes me think you're careful with your money.

    The $15k in savings, I'd urge you to consider re-allocating some of it into a Roth IRA if you've got earned income and assuming it's not already in one.

    It is typically fairly easy to go back and ask for more money if you take less to start off with. Talk with your school's FA office to confirm this.

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