How can you avoid getting into $200,000 in student debt?

student debt







By: Brian Safdari

Can you get into $200,000 in debt just from student loans? Of course you can, but I specifically wrote this article so you can learn how to avoid making this costly mistake.

In this article I will cover three main topics:

  1. Why finding career options before college is so important
  2. How to properly plan for a college education
  3. How to avoid unnecessary debt

A family we recently met with had 2 students going to universities in New York.  They did not have a plan going into college and Nick, their oldest son, was undecided on his major and career.  Nick spent his first 5 years in college figuring out what he wanted to do after he graduated.  After 7 years Nick finally graduated with an outstanding amount of debt.  What went wrong?

Nick was an excellent student who excelled in academics and extra-curricular activities.  He just wasn’t sure of what he wanted to do after he graduated.  Why is it so important to know what major(s) you want to study in college? I’ll answer this question by telling you it could save you $200,000.

Nick graduated from college in 7 years and ended up with over $200,000 in student debt.  The only reason he took that long was because he wasn’t sure about his major and he didn’t know where to turn for help.  It’s not uncommon for students to change their majors, and on average students will actually change their major 2-3 times.  What is important is that there are resources to help students who are not sure on their major or career.  College Planning Experts serves over 700 students every year, providing the resources families need to never make these mistakes.

I am not telling you that the average debt for a college graduate is $200,000 (more around $30,000[1]).  I am simply stating that students should at least know what fields they would enjoy working in based off their skill set, interests, personality, and goals.  High school students should begin asking themselves “What do I enjoy doing?” “What would I excel in?” “Do I want a big school or more 1-on-1 teaching?”  These questions should be asked before college, saving time and money while in college.

We call this student planning and positioning.  Knowing which field a student would enjoy working in will help decide what schools they should apply to.  Not all schools offer the same majors, so it is important to research what schools provide the majors your student might be interested in.  Is your student interested in a few different fields?  If this is the case then make sure your student applies to schools that offer all the majors they are interested in. This not only minimizes the need to transfer, but it ultimately cuts costs.

For more resources visit us online at or sign up for our Free College Planning Workshop today! Remember you’re not in this alone.


College planning just became easy with College Planning Experts.


[1] USA Today – Class of 2012 hit with the average debt of 29,400


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