Welcome to another installment of iontuition’s Q&A series with personal finance bloggers. We have Holly and Greg Johnson from ClubThrifty.com, sharing their financial expertise with us. Holly and Greg started their blog in 2012 and have tackled around $60,000 in debt, including more than $20,000 in student loan debt. They now own several websites, a digital media company and work for themselves. Let’s see what they have to share with us!
What’s the best piece of financial advice you ever received?
The best piece of financial advice I have ever received came from my mother: “Always live below your means,” she said. “That way, you’ll have money to save no matter how much you earn.”
This is excellent advice for anyone – but especially students trying to pay down student loan debt. If you don’t take on a lifestyle you can’t afford, you’ll have extra money to save or pay down debt no matter what.
What’s your advice for those who have student loans?
My advice for people with student loans: Don’t wait around for the government or anyone else to reduce your burden or forgive your loans. You borrowed the money and you are ultimately responsible for it. Direct your efforts into an actionable plan that will pay off your loans over time. Live like a “poor student” as long as you can and annihilate your loans one month at a time.
If you could go back in time and give your 18-year-old self a piece of financial advice, what would it be?
My husband would probably advise himself not to earn a degree in theater arts. If you’re going to borrow money for college, get a practical degree that can lead to a real job. Act, dance, or pursue artistic endeavors in your spare time. With the cost of a four-year degree at an all-time high, “following your dreams” has become entirely too expensive.