Parents & Grandparents: don’t do it! Tell the kids to do college debt free; or if they are STEM majors with minimum debt.
The Washington Post reports:
Student debt now affects a staggering number of elderly Americans
The number of older Americans taking on student debt on behalf of their children and grandchildren has quadrupled in the past decade, with consumers over 60 now holding $66.7 billion in student loan debt, according to a new report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
The skyrocketing cost of college has placed a particular burden on older Americans, many of whom are struggling to pay back growing debts in their retirement years, according to the report. Nearly 40 percent of federal student loan borrowers over age 65 are in default, the highest rate for any age group, the data show.
“Student loan debt is clearly an intergenerational problem, and what we’re seeing is that this is unfortunately putting older consumers’ retirement at risk,” said Seth Frotman, assistant director of the Office for Students at the CFPB. “Older Americans are struggling under the weight of student loan debt.”
Americans owe nearly $1.4 trillion in outstanding student loans. A slow job market recovery, growing income inequality and stagnant wages have made it difficult for younger Americans to be economically independent, and now there are signs that those financial struggles are dragging down their parents and grandparents as well.