Personal Finance Aug 14, 2015 04:06 AM EDT

Set yourself free: How to stay away from the college debt row

By Staff Writer

Piles of college debt impale students and graduates. To defeat the increasing problem of heavy student loan, people should already follow a strategy even before the next school year begins.

This August 10 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton launched a campaign to finance higher education. It is a 10-year, $350 billion program that could help wipe out debt among millions of Americans.

Another move from the government is President Obama's Student Aide Bill of Rights, which he announced March of this year. This new law asks loan agencies to create a new system that would help curb student loans.

Forbes took to college financing guru Mark Kantrowitz for advice on how to curb college debt. Kantrowitz,  the author of "Filing the FAFSA," said students should have a strategy even before college applications are sent or the first classes begin.

Students can also look for colleges that give grants instead of loans, discounts or other assistance that are not in any way considered loans. Students who haven't found a college that offers these benefits should be a smart borrower.

Know the different kinds of loans. Kantrowitz recommends borrowing federal loans first. These are cheaper types and are easily available. Also, this type of loan has a more convenient repayment plan. If the student has exhausted the federal loan limits, they can opt for the parent loans or the private student loans.

Find a way to reduce costs. Enroll at a lower-cost college, apply for grants, reduce school expenses, try a tuition installment plan, or look for a cheaper long-term student loan debt.

Don't over-borrow. Student loan should be limited to the annual starting salary after graduation. Stay away from private student loans.

Student loan cripples fresh graduates. Learning how to properly deal with a financial debacle will provide a brighter future for graduates.

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