It’s been your dream to start your own business, and now it’s finally time. You have the education. You’ve done the research. Maybe you’ve even secured some small business funding. But, something still isn’t right. How can you successfully run a new business with that lofty student loan debt?

According to Fundera, as many as two million college graduates in America delayed starting a business because of student debt. However, you can avoid becoming a number in that figure if you play your cards right. There are three crucial aspects to starting a business with student loan debt…

  1. Manage Debt – Easier said than done, of course. But you can be in control of your debt by consolidating loans, qualifying for income-based repayment, refinancing, and deferring payments until you’re financially equipped.

  1. Find Funding – Sure, you have some savings and your parents might help out, but it’s always smart to have a funding plan. Consider startup loans, angel investors, crowdfunding, or even using money from your student loan.

  1. Listen to Advice – Because why wouldn’t you? The rule of thumb when it comes to managing debt is to live lean and never miss a payment. You can also find a mentor or financial expert to counsel you one on one.

Student debt can be shackling and a deterrent for achieving your entrepreneurial dreams — don’t let it. The infographic below offers some tips to get you started. Additionally, heed the insights from well-known entrepreneurs. Famous business leaders such as Steve Jobs started where you are today. They are proof that the visionaries will find a way to succeed.

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