Regardless of the economy, good or bad, more nurses are needed in almost every field of medicine.
Whether you are just getting out of high school, or you are a displaced worker looking for a new career, you have decided that you want to go to college and obtain a nursing degree.
But, you are worried about bad credit. Student loans may not be available, and you cannot afford a post-secondary education without financial aid. What do you do?
No-Credit-Check Federal Loans
Did you know that student federal loans do not require a credit check? In fact, the less money you have available in your coffers, the better chance you have of receiving a large enough loan to pay for your schooling.
Whether you are a single parent starting over, a teenager with no credit record either way, or someone that has faced bankruptcy because of hard times or losing your job, federal student loans basically give you the opportunity to get an education, to get started in your career field or start over in a new occupation.
Pell Grants are among the best “student loans” because you do not have to pay them back.
The amount you are granted is determined by your financial situation. For example, if you are a displaced worker without a cent to your name, you will likely receive the maximum amount allowable by law.
On the other hand, if you are still considered a dependent of your parents, the total of their incomes will be used to determine if you qualify for a Pell Grant.
So, if Mom and Dad do not plan on helping with college expenses, it is better for you to apply as an autonomous adult; then, their earnings will not affect the outcome of the application.
Stafford Subsidized Student Loan
A Stafford subsidized student loan is still a government loan.
However, if you receive this type of loan, you will have to start paying it back once you complete your degree program. Fortunately, you will generally have a six-month grace period to begin repaying the loan. It is assumed that you will need that time to find a job and get settled.
If for some reason you do not find a job within that time period, it is possible to ask for a delay in the beginning of the repayment process.
But, repay you will. Even if you file for bankruptcy, you will not be able to escape repayment of a subsidized student Loan. Bankruptcy laws do not cover federal subsidized student loans.
However, there are two nice aspects to the subsidized student loan, even if you run into bad credit. Student loans of this type:
- Can be extended to a 20-year repayment plan
- Interest begins to accrue after graduation
In other words, if you have a lot of bills, are a single parent, cannot find a decent paying job, or some other economically challenging situation, you can stretch the length of your student loan repayment from 10 to 20 years. However, you will have to prove economic need.
Fortunately, the reason why this is a subsidized student loan is because the interest on the money is subsidized by the Federal Government. You do not have to start paying any interest on the money you borrowed for nursing school until after graduation. Then, the interest will start accumulating, though the rate will still be very low compared to any personal loan.
Stafford Unsubsidized Student Loan
Even if you have bad credit, a student loan of the unsubsidized variety is still available to you. The loan is still backed by the Federal Government; it still qualifies for a very low interest rate; and you do not have to start paying it back until six months after graduation.
The only major difference is that the interest on the loan is applied from the day you take the money. You will not be receiving the money free while you are in school.
Also, the same restrictions apply. You cannot claim bankruptcy and get out of paying if you have bad credit. A student loan is exempt from those proceedings.
However, you might be able to get the loan adjusted, as far as the repayment plan goes; so, you have more time and lower payments to consider.
A Cautious Word
Although the interest rates are low, even if you have bad credit, student loans are not to be taken lightly. For those who have already had money problems in the past, or have no visible experience handling money, this is your chance to begin or start over. It is not a free lunch, so to speak.
Many people get student loans and use them inappropriately like free money.
The tuition and fees may be deducted by the educational facility, but the balance is for you to purchase books and supplies needed for your learning. It is not for purchasing a new wardrobe, going out to eat, or whatever.
Although some students genuinely have to live on the spare change, because they still have to support a family while going to school, it is better to keep any extra in the bank.
Generally, you will be given the option to pay the interest on the unsubsidized student loan quarterly, while still in school.
Even though you do not have to, if you can swing it, paying the interest early will save you a bunch of money during the repayment life of the loan.
In summary, even if you have bad credit, student loans are available to help you go to nursing school.
Whether you get a Pell Grant, subsidized student loan, or unsubsidized student loan, you can finish school before you have to worry about paying any of it back to the government.
Fortunately, the demand for new nurses is high and the pay is good. So, if you feel you have what it takes to be a good nurse, and you are thinking of making it a career, the need for money should not stand in your way.