Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

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Kobe_Teeth
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Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:40 am

Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby Kobe_Teeth » Mon May 17, 2010 2:40 pm

I'm living with my SO during law school. My school thinks I'll need about $15,000 for CoL. I think I'll need about $12,000. I've got about $7,000 saved. How much should I take out in loans?

$5000
$6000
$10000

Did most of you end up with money leftover? A shortage? Are there lots of hidden costs?

angioletto
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Joined: Sun Aug 23, 2009 8:14 pm

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby angioletto » Mon May 17, 2010 4:11 pm

You would know better than the school how much you actually need. I wouldn't take out extra just because the school says you can. They come up with those budgets for people who do not live with someone else who will be providing for them financially. As long as your relationship is stable with your SO and you are sure of your budget just take out what is needed. If something comes up and you fall short you can request more money (if you didn't take out the full amount) later in the year.

Pearalegal
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Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2009 10:50 am

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby Pearalegal » Mon May 17, 2010 4:32 pm

I would err on the side of trusting your school, especially that first year. Reevaluate the situation after that. You really can't fully know what your costs will be as a law student because you've never been one before.

Kobe_Teeth
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Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2009 1:40 am

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby Kobe_Teeth » Mon May 17, 2010 4:42 pm

Wow...thanks for the opposing advice. haha

Can you really just request more if you don't take out the full amount??? If that's the case, I'll go with a lower amount. I need to e-mail my finaid people and ask them specifics. I just wanted to get a sense of what questions I should be asking.

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webbylu87
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Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby webbylu87 » Mon May 17, 2010 4:45 pm

Kobe_Teeth wrote:Wow...thanks for the opposing advice. haha

Can you really just request more if you don't take out the full amount??? If that's the case, I'll go with a lower amount. I need to e-mail my finaid people and ask them specifics. I just wanted to get a sense of what questions I should be asking.


It's been my understanding that you can take out more throughout the year if you end up needing it. You can also return some of the cash (but of course you may have incurred some interest charges) throughout the year if you end up taking out more than you needed. Someone feel free to correct me though.

lawlec48
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Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2009 11:03 pm

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby lawlec48 » Mon May 17, 2010 4:54 pm

I'm in a similar situation, my wife will be working full-time while I'm in law school and we have around 15k in the bank, and were trying to decide whether we would require to take out any cash for COL. In the end, we decided to take the full amount for the first year, with the anticipation of hopefully not needing to use any of the loan and then not taking out loans for COL in 2L and 3L. If we do not need the loans after 1L, we plan to use the money for COL from 1L and put it towards my 2L tuition costs. This will ensure for 1L we are safe financially, and if/when we don't need the extra we will use it like a normal loan. The only negative would/will be the extra 9 months of built up interest if not covered by the government during the deferment and/or in-school portion of the loan, and if the loan is a private loan or Plus loan, which can have higher interest rate.

angioletto
Posts: 285
Joined: Sun Aug 23, 2009 8:14 pm

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby angioletto » Mon May 17, 2010 5:05 pm

Pearalegal wrote:I would err on the side of trusting your school, especially that first year. Reevaluate the situation after that. You really can't fully know what your costs will be as a law student because you've never been one before.



Sure you can. I live with my husband and kids. I already know what all of my bills are and we've been living on the same budget for 2 years now. I know exactly how much money I have to contribute to our living expenses. I added in the school's estimates for books and supplies and it is still less than the school's COL.

So like I said - if you are in a stable living situation where your SO contributes a certain amount towards expenses and you know your SO will not suddenly decide to move out or leave you hanging without their income then you can certainly estimate how much you need and only borrow that amount. If you are moving to a new city and you are unfamiliar with things like cost of groceries or how much your utilities will be then maybe you want to be more generous with your budget but if you know your expenses like I do then there is no need to take out extra money.

Pearalegal
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Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2009 10:50 am

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby Pearalegal » Mon May 17, 2010 5:21 pm

angioletto wrote:
Pearalegal wrote:I would err on the side of trusting your school, especially that first year. Reevaluate the situation after that. You really can't fully know what your costs will be as a law student because you've never been one before.



Sure you can. I live with my husband and kids. I already know what all of my bills are and we've been living on the same budget for 2 years now. I know exactly how much money I have to contribute to our living expenses. I added in the school's estimates for books and supplies and it is still less than the school's COL.

So like I said - if you are in a stable living situation where your SO contributes a certain amount towards expenses and you know your SO will not suddenly decide to move out or leave you hanging without their income then you can certainly estimate how much you need and only borrow that amount. If you are moving to a new city and you are unfamiliar with things like cost of groceries or how much your utilities will be then maybe you want to be more generous with your budget but if you know your expenses like I do then there is no need to take out extra money.[/quote]

Fair enough, and while you obviously have your shit together, the bolded is important. You're obviously is a very solid phase in your life where budgeting has become second nature and an absolute necessity. I've been out of school for 2 year and entirely independent but as I'm moving to a new place and will be living a different lifestyle than I currently am used to...I'm just going with the school's suggested budget.

Your lifestyle might not change a whole lot, because you have your kids to put first. Maybe OP is as financially responsible and tied down, maybe not. Unless their SO is in a comfortable financial position and both are 100% positive on their expenses and familiar with the area they'll be living in, I'd say follow the guidelines for the school.

creatinganalt
Posts: 272
Joined: Sun Mar 21, 2010 6:41 pm

Re: Taking Out Less Than Suggested CoL

Postby creatinganalt » Mon May 17, 2010 5:24 pm

^ I think there's another situation you've forgotten. The school may have budgeted something particularly high (like rent). If you can get it lower, you can reduce accordingly.




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