Financial Literacy
For Your Future



How Should I Pay For A Post High School Education? - Insights Guide

The question of how a person should pay for a purchase should be considered along with the decision to buy as payment decisions usually influence the expected benefits versus expected costs calculations. Paying for post high school education is no exception. Consequently, some of the thinking about this question has probably already been done and a review of the process you followed in deciding to go back to school after high school graduation is important and needs to take place now. Your review will be a reminder of your values and life’s goals that you factored into your decision and it will highlight the fact that all choices have costs including payment options. Assuming your cursory review of your choice to go forward is complete and your out-of pocket expenses are still accurate and acceptable, let’s move forward and give the payment question the time and thought it deserves.

Application Insights-How Should I Pay For Post High School Education? is like any other decision as it attempts to make the best decision (highest benefit, lowest cost) among many possibilities. Just to be sure, recalculate your calculated real cost of going to school beyond high school. Be specific and use numbers that are current and relate to your specific program. As costs change rapidly in this area, research the numbers one more time and seek help where possible. Don’t forget foregone income from opportunities lost while you attend school. It is most likely that the yearly totals seem high and the quest for the proper payment options seems like a difficult task. Stick with it and remember you have already decided post high school education is worth it, you now want to fine tune the payment options so money is not wasted. As you move into the specific insights that the guide will provide just remember that money costs whether it belongs to you or another party. Opportunity cost is a critical concept when you look at using your own funds to pay for college because its cost is the value of the next best use of those funds.

  • As stated earlier, the question of paying for post high school education evolves from and is connected to your choice to go to school. The context is “I am doing this so what is the best choice to pay for it”? 

  • Knowing who you are and what you value and expect out of life is an important element regarding this question. Payment portfolios can include many items and many carry a personal, legal, and time frame dimension. A proper choice is partially dependent upon how accurate your future job and income projections are.  Some people pay for their post high school decision for many years after completion and others get it out of the way in a shorter period of time.
  • Alternatives abound when it comes to paying for post high school education.  Seldom is one form of payment available so it is quite probable that you will select several options and place them into a payment portfolio. Combining, scholarships, savings, future part time job income, Government aide (including the possibility of Perkins Loans, Stafford Loans, and Federal Plus Loans, etc.), private loans, grants, work study, gifts, family help, college investment funds if available or insurance plans cash value to name a few may allow the costs to be lower and the payment plans to be spread out over time and be more consistent with your ability to pay the money back. Seeking advice from recognized experts is critical here so take advantage of your banker, school financial aid office, insurance agent, government agencies local, state, and Federal.
  • Evaluate your alternatives based upon your goals and projected ability to pay, not to mention the cost you need to pay to get the money. Remember for most people once source will not pay for the total cost of going to school after high school.  Select funds and payment options that fit you and are the lowest cost. Gifts and scholarships are desirable because you don’t have to pay them back and the cost might be just completing an application or sending a Thank You card. In addition, when planning your repayment program, pay the highest cost (interest) funds first. 
  • Seeking input from others has already been mentioned and in this case take place earlier rather than later.  In addition, because post high school education is over time seeking input along the way is the best way to stay current and perhaps take advantage of something new that is better than what was available earlier.  Reviewing your payment decisions over time could save you a lot of money and give you the opportunity to reassess your choice to go back to school in the first place. Take action and put your portfolio together. Keep all of the paperwork in a safe and accessible place. Being super organized is an important part of your choice and you will be glad you have all of the documents, agreements, and plans readily available after you graduate.


1) MSNBC: 12 Tips On Paying For College In Tough Times.
2) Bank Rate: Student Loans
3) Kiplinger Reports: Paying For College


Website Builder