How to Pay Off Your Student Loans Quickly

By Rachel Cruze

3 Minute Read

Student loan debt is at an all-time high.

According to Experian, student loan debt is more than $1.2 trillion, an 84% increase since the recession less than a decade ago. Forty million people have at least one student loan with an average balance of $29,000.1

Student loans are the most “popular” form of debt in America right now—more than credit cards, mortgages, or any other kind of loan. This is insane, people!

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But whether you will be graduating from college in the upcoming months or you’ve been nursing those student loans for a decade now, I want you to get out of debt as quickly as possible.

But how? Everything else I’ve tried hasn’t worked, you may be thinking to yourself.

Pay Off Student Loans Quickly with the Debt Snowball

The debt snowball method has helped millions of families dump debt once and for all. Simply list all your debts from smallest balance to largest, including your student loans. 

Start paying on that smallest balance first. Put every extra bit of money you have into paying off that one debt while paying the minimums on everything else. Sell some stuff. Cut back on your spending. Take an extra part-time job if you need to.

Once you’ve paid off that first debt, move to the second smallest balance. Take everything you were putting toward the first one and add that to the minimum of the second balance. Once that debt is paid, move on to the next one and repeat the process until you’re finally out of debt.

So what about interest rates? Money is 80% behavior and 20% math. That’s why I want you to focus on the overall balances, not the interest rates. Knocking those little ones out first will give you a couple of quick wins to keep you motivated as you shake off that student loan debt.

Related: Get your debt snowball rolling with EveryDollar, Dave Ramsey’s free budget app.

Stay Motivated to Pay Off Those Student Loans Fast

I’m not here to beat you up over taking out student loans in the past. I just want you to realize the power of living debt free. When your money doesn’t have Sallie Mae’s name on it every month, you can do so much more with it!

You can save for retirement and your kids’ college funds. You can pay for vacations with cash. You can give away money and change the lives of people all over the world. That’s what I want for you!

So if you’re living with student loan debt, make a plan to begin paying it off as quickly as possible. Make some sacrifices now to set yourself up to really win with money later!

Rachel Cruze is a seasoned communicator and #1 best-selling author, helping Americans learn the proper ways to handle money and stay out of debt. Her best-selling book, Love Your Life, Not Theirs, released in October of 2016. You can follow Rachel on YouTube, Facebook, or online at

1"Analyze This: A Close-Up Look at Student Loan Debt," Experian.

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