- Forbearance for Residents: Residents can sometimes defer loan payments until becoming an attending physician, however stay cautious of accumulating interest in this period.
- Income Based Repayment (IBR): The federal government allows you to make loan payments based on your income level. Most residents qualify to make smaller payments during residency without getting hit hard with interest accumulation.
- Public Service Loan Forgiveness: It is possible to combine loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan only for direct loans or if working for qualified employers such as nonprofits or federal agencies. You also might be eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) with multiple repayment plan options.
- Income-Driven Repayment: There are ways to get federal loan forgiveness under the IBR and PSLF programs. For example with PSLF, if you make 120 qualifying payments, leftover debt is forgiven apart from taxes on the loan and if you are facing many years of medical training, the overall savings could be huge.
- Refinance: Just like refinancing your mortgage, you can frequently find better rates on your medical school loans sometimes without having to provide collateral.
Written by Alison Killian
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