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The ‘Debt Free’ college experience

Many Americans have discovered a new meaning to the ‘College Experience’: DEBT.

Got a son or daughter heading to college? If you’re ‘rich’; it’s probably not a problem. And if you’re officially ‘poor’, there are grants, scholarships, etc. Google 'college savings calculator' to see how much money you need.

But if you are Middle Class: Beware!

Just how badly middle-class Americans have been hit by college costs is difficult to determine, but nearly all sources point to college costs (tuition, fees, and room and board) that have increased between 400% and 600% percent over the past three decades – an astonishing three to four times faster than the overall consumer price index during the same time period.

Most big-name state universities will cost parents between $20,000 and $25,000 per year. Private colleges and universities range from $30,000 to more than $60,000 per year. Given ongoing high inflation rates – more than 8% at public institutions – we can easily say there’s almost no way a student can spend less than $100,000 for a four year degree. If you want to send your student to an elite institution it can easily cost parents more than a quarter million dollars and/or burden the student (and parents) with a debt load that can severely restrict their future choices.

In 2009, the most recent data available, 67 percent of graduates had debt, averaging $24,000 per student, up 6 percent from the previous year, according to the non-profit Project on Student Debt. The numbers are even higher at private institutions. The figures do not include the growing number of loans taken out by parents, and only limited data on for-profit colleges, where student debt is typically much higher, but relatively few institutions report it.

Americans now owe more on their student loans than they do on their credit cards—a first, according to, which has created what it calls the Student Loan Debt Clock.

The organization figures America’s student loan debt is growing at a rate of $2,853.88 per second, estimated to surpass $1 trillion in 2012. And, unlike a mortgage, in which a borrower can refinance or—at worst—face foreclosure and bankruptcy, student loans do not go away.

I am a happy to say that my daughter graduated from college without any student loan debt. No, we are not rich; and through a lot of hard work, we are not poor.

How did we do it?

First, my daughter used the CLEP program (check this out online) to acquire a large number of college credits. She was able to study at her own pace, take a test when she was ready, and do so for a fraction of what traditional classroom learning would cost. Then she transferred those credits to an online university and finished her senior year attending class on the internet. Her fully accredited college education has cost us less than $10,000.

And, this is the best part; my daughter was able to earn her tuition by working in our family office cleaning business. You see, we knew college was approaching, and unlike a traditional job where my earnings were limited; I was able to contract with additional clients for office cleaning services. During one six-month period we actually doubled our gross family income.

College without debt? You bet! There are many ways people try to make money at home or look for part time jobs from home. Whether you have a student in college or know that college is part of his/her future; you can reduce or eliminate college debt with your own office cleaning business!

Go here to find out more!

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