Student loan borrowers in Atlanta have many options for repayment
We have discussed the student loan debt crisis previously on this blog, and many Atlanta residents are all too familiar with this issue due to their own personal experiences. Student loan debt in this nation recently hit the $1.2 trillion mark and many Georgia residents are hurting as a result. In fact, the average student loan borrower is now graduating with about $26,000 in debt–and 10% of borrowers are at least $40,000 in the red before they toss their caps.
Even for those who can afford to make their student loan payments, a large student debt load can lead to other problems, such as having no resources to stash into savings or purchase a home. For some, it can mean that they end up incurring unmanageable amounts of credit card debt.
As many people are aware, student loan debt is not dischargeable in bankruptcy, but Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection may still help some student loan borrowers by erasing other financial liabilities.
Federal student loan borrowers should also look into the options for student loan repayment. Many borrowers may not know that there are actually several options available for repaying student loans.
Most student loan repayment plans automatically are placed on a 10-year schedule, but borrowers may have the option to extend the length of their loans and make smaller payments. Income-based repayment plans are also available; these plans link the monthly payment to the borrower’s income and, in some cases, the remaining balance will ultimately be forgiven after a set number of years.
Those who are struggling with debt may want to ask their loan servicers about these options. Information is also available from the federal Department of Education. If these options do not provide much respite, it may be beneficial to talk to a legal professional about debt relief options.
Source: Bloomgberg Businessweek, “The U.S. Has a Really Helpful Student Loan Repayment Program—and No One’s Using It,” Karen Weise, Aug. 7, 2013