Wisdom of the Masses

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jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:44 pm

Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:35 am

Before you post typical TLC snark…I know….I basically cost myself over $100k by not taking school seriously 10 years ago (sub 3.0 GPA). That 40 oz bottle of Old English cost me way more than $1.25. But here I am, determined to make something of myself and become a legal advocate of some kind.
When I got a 170, I thought I’d be able to get $ but so far only DePaul came through and their 12k per year hardly made it affordable. Ideally, I’d spend 45-60 hours a week working for under-represented peoples and still have time and money for a good life outside of work. That said I’m no bleary-eyed, fresh-faced 21 year-old. I don’t hate corporations and I know that most people don’t make it to big law and that most people don’t find paying non-profit work. Most people are going to practice at a small-mid size firm doing whatever they can find. Some people move with their JD but most are going to practice where they have a solid alumni base and strong reputation. If you have success moving can be easier but then you have to start over and make new contacts. I will go somewhere where I believe I could be happy for 25 years.
I’m going into the fall with an open mind. I expect to do well but I suppose that being serious and smart is the rule at schools o law, not the exception. I’m on hold at WashU and I like both St. Louis and Chicago but they appear to be over-committed. I’m wait-listed at GW/UNC/ILL/WAKE/W&M and I don’t expect to get off them though with a 170 I suppose it is possible. At this time I am considering Lewis & Clark over Georgia despite the higher cost for a lower ranked school. I already put down $ at UGA and I have until May 2 to put down a deposit at L&C. The main reasons I would go to a school ranked 40 spots lower and costs 45k more: I loves Portland and I don’t likes Atlanta. When I applied to Georgia, I figured I could get back to the triangle (Raleigh-Durham) pretty easily. As I began to look more closely at their employment data, I see that their pull is very strong in Georgia and not so strong everywhere else, especially in North Carolina where UNC and Wake win out. Only 5 people have been placed in NC from UGA in each of the last two years. I don't need to return to NC but its a bit of a gamble to go to UGA when you are pretty sure you don't want to sit on I-85/75/20 for two hours each day. I’ve broken down some rough estimates below and included WashU just in case:

BIG LAW (I rock law school) 100k a year after taxes $6583 a month
LUCKY LAW (I make a good connection) 80k a year after taxes $5333 a month
SMALL LAW (median eh?) 60k a year after taxes $4083 a month
PI (don’t stop believing) 40k a year after taxes $2833 a month

Georgia-105k
Repayment Over 10 years 117k-$971 a month
Repayment Over 25 years 135k-$450 a month
Federal PI Forgiveness Income Contingent-40k a year-$486.17

Lewis & Clark-150k
Over 10 years 166k-$1387 a month
Over 25 years 192k-$643 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

Washington U-170k
Over 10 years 188k $1572 a month
Over 25 years 218k-$729 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

So, what am I not considering? Talk me out of it. Confirm my wisdom Tell me horror stories. Just don’t tell me I should not have wasted my under-grad years because I already know that. I could easily be making a decision between UVA and Wash U with full tuition if I’d worked at school in the late 90s.

JRMjr
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Apr 13, 2009 3:58 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby JRMjr » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:38 am

jackiemanuel wrote:Before you post typical TLC snark…I know….I basically cost myself over $100k by not taking school seriously 10 years ago (sub 3.0 GPA). That 40 oz bottle of Old English cost me way more than $1.25. But here I am, determined to make something of myself and become a legal advocate of some kind.
When I got a 170, I thought I’d be able to get $ but so far only DePaul came through and their 12k per year hardly made it affordable. Ideally, I’d spend 45-60 hours a week working for under-represented peoples and still have time and money for a good life outside of work. That said I’m no bleary-eyed, fresh-faced 21 year-old. I don’t hate corporations and I know that most people don’t make it to big law and that most people don’t find paying non-profit work. Most people are going to practice at a small-mid size firm doing whatever they can find. Some people move with their JD but most are going to practice where they have a solid alumni base and strong reputation. If you have success moving can be easier but then you have to start over and make new contacts. I will go somewhere where I believe I could be happy for 25 years.
I’m going into the fall with an open mind. I expect to do well but I suppose that being serious and smart is the rule at schools o law, not the exception. I’m on hold at WashU and I like both St. Louis and Chicago but they appear to be over-committed. I’m wait-listed at GW/UNC/ILL/WAKE/W&M and I don’t expect to get off them though with a 170 I suppose it is possible. At this time I am considering Lewis & Clark over Georgia despite the higher cost for a lower ranked school. I already put down $ at UGA and I have until May 2 to put down a deposit at L&C. The main reasons I would go to a school ranked 40 spots lower and costs 45k more: I loves Portland and I don’t likes Atlanta. When I applied to Georgia, I figured I could get back to the triangle (Raleigh-Durham) pretty easily. As I began to look more closely at their employment data, I see that their pull is very strong in Georgia and not so strong everywhere else, especially in North Carolina where UNC and Wake win out. Only 5 people have been placed in NC from UGA in each of the last two years. I don't need to return to NC but its a bit of a gamble to go to UGA when you are pretty sure you don't want to sit on I-85/75/20 for two hours each day. I’ve broken down some rough estimates below and included WashU just in case:

BIG LAW (I rock law school) 100k a year after taxes $6583 a month
LUCKY LAW (I make a good connection) 80k a year after taxes $5333 a month
SMALL LAW (median eh?) 60k a year after taxes $4083 a month
PI (don’t stop believing) 40k a year after taxes $2833 a month

Georgia-105k
Repayment Over 10 years 117k-$971 a month
Repayment Over 25 years 135k-$450 a month
Federal PI Forgiveness Income Contingent-40k a year-$486.17

Lewis & Clark-150k
Over 10 years 166k-$1387 a month
Over 25 years 192k-$643 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

Washington U-170k
Over 10 years 188k $1572 a month
Over 25 years 218k-$729 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

So, what am I not considering? Talk me out of it. Confirm my wisdom Tell me horror stories. Just don’t tell me I should not have wasted my under-grad years because I already know that. I could easily be making a decision between UVA and Wash U with full tuition if I’d worked at school in the late 90s.


go to UGA, crush the first year, transfer to UNC or better.

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traehekat
Posts: 3195
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:00 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby traehekat » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:42 am

jackiemanuel wrote:Georgia-105k
Repayment Over 10 years 117k-$971 a month
Repayment Over 25 years 135k-$450 a month
Federal PI Forgiveness Income Contingent-40k a year-$486.17

Lewis & Clark-150k
Over 10 years 166k-$1387 a month
Over 25 years 192k-$643 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

Washington U-170k
Over 10 years 188k $1572 a month
Over 25 years 218k-$729 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

So, what am I not considering? Talk me out of it. Confirm my wisdom Tell me horror stories. Just don’t tell me I should not have wasted my under-grad years because I already know that. I could easily be making a decision between UVA and Wash U with full tuition if I’d worked at school in the late 90s.


I'm a little confused what these numbers are supposed to be?

jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:44 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:47 am

[/quote]

go to UGA, crush the first year, transfer to UNC or better.[/quote]


If I do well enough to transfer to UNC (they only took 7 last year) then I won't have anything to worry about. I plan to do very well but no one really knows what 1L is like before they do it.

jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:44 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Fri Apr 23, 2010 10:48 am

traehekat wrote:
jackiemanuel wrote:Georgia-105k
Repayment Over 10 years 117k-$971 a month
Repayment Over 25 years 135k-$450 a month
Federal PI Forgiveness Income Contingent-40k a year-$486.17

Lewis & Clark-150k
Over 10 years 166k-$1387 a month
Over 25 years 192k-$643 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

Washington U-170k
Over 10 years 188k $1572 a month
Over 25 years 218k-$729 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

So, what am I not considering? Talk me out of it. Confirm my wisdom Tell me horror stories. Just don’t tell me I should not have wasted my under-grad years because I already know that. I could easily be making a decision between UVA and Wash U with full tuition if I’d worked at school in the late 90s.


I'm a little confused what these numbers are supposed to be?


The total cost (including interest) and then the monthly payments.

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traehekat
Posts: 3195
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:00 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby traehekat » Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:18 am

jackiemanuel wrote:
traehekat wrote:
jackiemanuel wrote:Georgia-105k
Repayment Over 10 years 117k-$971 a month
Repayment Over 25 years 135k-$450 a month
Federal PI Forgiveness Income Contingent-40k a year-$486.17

Lewis & Clark-150k
Over 10 years 166k-$1387 a month
Over 25 years 192k-$643 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

Washington U-170k
Over 10 years 188k $1572 a month
Over 25 years 218k-$729 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

So, what am I not considering? Talk me out of it. Confirm my wisdom Tell me horror stories. Just don’t tell me I should not have wasted my under-grad years because I already know that. I could easily be making a decision between UVA and Wash U with full tuition if I’d worked at school in the late 90s.


I'm a little confused what these numbers are supposed to be?


The total cost (including interest) and then the monthly payments.


I think you may be a little off on those...

Using the simple loan repayment calculator off http://www.accessgroup.org, a $105,000 (Georgia) loan, with $25,500 of it being subsidized at 6.8%, $36,000 being unsubsidized at 6.8%, and $43,500 (the remaining cost of attendance after Stafford loans) unsubsidized at 8.5% will come to a grand total of $165,194, with monthly payments of $1,377 (for 10 years).

EDIT: Over 25 years, the total cost of the loan (principal + interest) is much more than $135,000... it is more like $256,000. It costs SIGNIFICANTLY more to pay loan back over 25 years versus over 10.

jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:44 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:27 am

traehekat wrote:
jackiemanuel wrote:
traehekat wrote:
jackiemanuel wrote:Georgia-105k
Repayment Over 10 years 117k-$971 a month
Repayment Over 25 years 135k-$450 a month
Federal PI Forgiveness Income Contingent-40k a year-$486.17

Lewis & Clark-150k
Over 10 years 166k-$1387 a month
Over 25 years 192k-$643 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

Washington U-170k
Over 10 years 188k $1572 a month
Over 25 years 218k-$729 a month
IC-40k a year-$486.17

So, what am I not considering? Talk me out of it. Confirm my wisdom Tell me horror stories. Just don’t tell me I should not have wasted my under-grad years because I already know that. I could easily be making a decision between UVA and Wash U with full tuition if I’d worked at school in the late 90s.


I'm a little confused what these numbers are supposed to be?


The total cost (including interest) and then the monthly payments.


I think you may be a little off on those...

Using the simple loan repayment calculator off http://www.accessgroup.org, a $105,000 (Georgia) loan, with $25,500 of it being subsidized at 6.8%, $36,000 being unsubsidized at 6.8%, and $43,500 (the remaining cost of attendance after Stafford loans) unsubsidized at 8.5% will come to a grand total of $165,194, with monthly payments of $1,377 (for 10 years).


Yes, I calculated at lower interest rates, which I may be able to secure. If not though, your numbers are correct. My sketch is rough but even 8.5% can be dealt with by using investments/bonuses to pay of the principal earlier and reduce the cost. Who wants a house when you could have a JD!

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traehekat
Posts: 3195
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 4:00 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby traehekat » Fri Apr 23, 2010 11:32 am

jackiemanuel wrote:Yes, I calculated at lower interest rates, which I may be able to secure. If not though, your numbers are correct. My sketch is rough but even 8.5% can be dealt with by using investments/bonuses to pay of the principal earlier and reduce the cost. Who wants a house when you could have a JD!


Heh, I hear you. At an ASD a current student told us about someone he knew who took out a ton of loans, but was able to land a big firm job paying like, $160,000/year after he graduated. So he basically lived like a college student for another year while he was working at the firm, and thus was able to put a big dent in the principal of his loan. Smart move, but then again if you land a job like that, I don't think you have to worry too much about your loans no matter what you do.

arundodonax
Posts: 59
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 5:31 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby arundodonax » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:49 pm

I've been crunching the numbers just like you (also looking at L&C at sticker) using finaid.com's IBR calculator:

http://www.finaid.org/calculators/ibr.phtml

Let's say you land a 40k/yr PI, or 65k/yr private sector job to start, out of L&C.
With a 7% raise per year (lawyers tend to have larger annual increases than the suggested 4%, based on NALP data), with 20k in 6.5% subsidized, 30k in 6.5% unsubsidized, and 100k in 8.5% unsubsidized:

40k/yr PI:

Obviously you go the IBR route if you can commit for 10 years - you pay a total of about 55k over 10 years and the rest (170k) is written off. Payments are 300-650 a month. I'm not going in assuming I can get a PI job, though L&C seems like a good place to get one. IBR will be great for those that go this route, just dont change your mind about PI or hope they don't repeal IBR during repayment, because you'd have been paying interest for all 10 years.

65k/yr private sector:
$550-1800 a month for 25 years under IBR (15% of your pay after 10k, again assuming the raises)
or
1100 a month for 25 years under the traditional plan (you pay 345k over the life of the loan)

Under IBR govt pays a lot of your interest and principal, but you still end up shelling out about the same in the end (about 350k), the difference is in how much you pay back, when.

But ultimately my plan is paying more upfront (again assuming 65k/yr and 150k in debt):

Bumping the traditional monthly payment from 1100 to:
1600/month: paid off in 12 years, 234k total paid
1800/month: paid off in 10 years, 218k total paid
2000/month: paid off in 8.5 years, 207k total paid

This way my loan is paid off and I have that money in yrs X-25 to invest in retirement, family, etc. Yes, this means if I'm making 65k year one and I'm paying 1800 a month, I'm probably living on 25k after taxes (completely doable IMO), but if I'm still putting away just 1800 a month in subsequent years, I'm able to increase my lifestyle, add to retirement, pay for family, etc.

jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:44 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:40 am

anyone else....have to decide by Friday....

blsingindisguise
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Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby blsingindisguise » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:15 am

Is that your cost including living expenses?

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Aeroplane
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Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby Aeroplane » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:29 am

If you want to work in Oregon, maybe you should consider U of Oregon if you can get in-state tuition which is $24K. Will Lewis & Clark really make your job prospects better by enough to justify the additional debt?

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ggocat
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Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby ggocat » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:51 am

jackiemanuel wrote:SMALL LAW (median eh?) 60k a year after taxes $4083 a month

Seems a little high for small law.
Last edited by ggocat on Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2009 5:44 pm

Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:54 am

blsingindisguise wrote:Is that your cost including living expenses?


Yes.

jackiemanuel
Posts: 22
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Re: Wisdom of the Masses

Postby jackiemanuel » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:56 am

ggocat wrote:
jackiemanuel wrote:SMALL LAW (median eh?) 60k a year after taxes $4083 a month

:?: Seems like a lot for small law.


Sure, maybe it is. You can guess at what things will be like but obviously there are a lot of variables. I don't know anything about getting in state at Oregon but I'm not taking a year off so it isn't an option.




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