Getting a grasp on student loan debt

Published: Sep. 5, 2019 at 7:34 PM PDT
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Just last month, President Donald Trump signed a measure to make it easier for permanently disabled veterans to access student loan forgiveness, bringing attention to the $1.56 trillion in student loan debt. That debt is felt by almost 45 million Americans.

Whether you're currently in school, a recent graduate, or years past completing college, there is a solution to find financial student loan freedom in the Biggest Little City in the World.

Furthering your education is a decision many make to get closer to their career goals. While college is a fun and informative experience, the thought of paying for it can be stressful, even sometimes becoming the deciding factor.

in Reno is here to tell you it doesn't have to be.

"The key is to reduce debt, budget, and pay off the debt," Dr. Kimberly Greenman, CEO of Financially Fit Employees said.

Budgets are a valuable tool in helping us identify extra money we have to pay towards our student loan debt.

"If we can find out how much we owe completely on all our student loan debt, then we can determine when we'd like to pay it off," Dr. Greenman said. "At that point, we can work backwards and figure out how much we need to pay each month to meet that goal."

However, finding the minimum monthly payment to pay is just the beginning.

"That minimum needs to go into the budget, but obviously if we pay the minimum, then it's going to take the maximum amount of time to pay off that debt," Dr. Greenman said.

Knowing what you spend your money on and how much also plays a vital role. One of the main areas financial experts said people spend their extra cash on is food.

"Whether it’s at the grocery store, fast food or eating out at restaurants, it's amazing how much we spend as we eat," Dr. Greenman said.

Foregoing some of those small purchases now can help get more of what you really want in the future.

"Take the time to sit down and establish a budget," Dr. Greenman said. "Use your money to get the things that you want. Your money is your tool; make it work for you not against you."

For $5, Financially Fit Employees can help you get on track to take control of your student loan debt. You can select a coach with the company to help you set goals and budget your money.

You can

, and then monitor and track your progress with the company's

for smartphones. You can also see other people's progress and goals similar to yours to motivate you.

Copyright KOLO-TV 2019