(WSYR-TV) — Student loan payments are returning, after being put on hold for three years due to the pandemic. But what happens if you don’t or can’t pay them? Financial Advisor, Rick Reagan offers some advice.

The COVID-19 pandemic put a freeze on federal student loan payments, but that will soon be coming to an end. Starting September 1, interest will start accruing. So how can you prepare now?

“You really want to look closely at your budget and find out where you can get that money from and if you have to cut where you’re going to have to make the cuts,” said Rick Reagan, MBA, CFP, Reagan Companies.

The good news… you still got some time left. Payments don’t restart until October.

“So plan ahead, use these weeks to figure out where you can get that money from,” said Reagan.

Even with student loan interest accruing in less than two weeks, Reagan says if you can’t afford it, don’t worry about making a payment right now.

“You don’t have to and you don’t have interest accruing yet on it,” said Reagan.

Reagan added, “I’d go ahead and just make the scheduled payment when you have to in October.”

But if making payments isn’t so easy for you financially, there are options, including the Save Plan.

The Save Plan was announced by President Joe Biden last month. It prevents interest on those loans from accumulating, as long as borrowers make regular payments. The Biden Administration says those who enroll could save about a thousand dollars a month.

“There’s going to be a lot of people eligible to maybe not completely eliminate the student loan payment but to pay a lower amount than you were originally paying before. That’s something you’re definitely going to want to talk to the government about to see if you qualify,” said Reagan.

Contacting your student loan provider is an important step in making sure information is up to date.

Getting a head start now, could save you some money.