Ask Farnoosh

Farnoosh Torabi

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On today’s episode of Ask Farnoosh, answering your questions about reducing the interest on a six-figure student loan figure, choosing a travel rewards card and how to afford graduate school. Is it always worth it?

Resources mentioned:

Sukh asks:

Hi Farnoosh, thank you so much for all the good information you have been providing on you Podcast. Have 2 unrelated question.

1) I have student loans worth about 200k and the interest rate is about 7.5%. I had tried to refinance the loan with my bank but they said I need a co-singer due to the fact I lack ” individual credit history (and I don’t have any one to co-sign.).. So I called Equifax and they told me I have great credit history, my score is in 750’s and I have never been late on my payments. What other options do I have to bring that interest rate down?

2) My mom has a Roth IRA and she is 54 years old. Does she have to withdraw all the money from her Roth by the time she is 59 1/2 or can she leave it there until she retires?

MJ asks:

I am 39, single, and applying to grad school in order to obtain an MPH, hopefully starting school within the next 12 months.  I spent my 30’s digging myself out of the financial mess I created in my 20’s and am now financially stable (low expenses and no debt with an emergency fund, Roth IRA, and 401k).  However, I can’t pay for school out of pocket, and, ideally, I will quit my current job to focus on school and reenter the job market when I complete the 2-year program.  I am likely to take a pay cut when I do reenter the job market.  What considerations do I need to make in terms of taking on student loan debt and pausing on retirement savings?  I am very certain that I want to pursue this degree.

Seema asks:

How can I find out about socially conscious/ socially responsible mutual funds/stocks that do as well as big corporate mutual funds/stocks? I enjoy investing, but of course don’t want to invest in McDonald’s etc.

Lilli asks:

Hi Farnoosh! I currently have a cash rewards card and am coming up on my one year card holder anniversary.  I was thinking of switching to a travel rewards card. I also want to ask for higher credit limit and lower interest. Should I do this within my existing credit card company or open an additional card? Thanks!