Tag: parents

4 considerations for parents with 529 plans

Posted on September 17th, 2013

This summer, college students and their parents narrowly avoided a student loan interest rate hike that would have raised interest rates on new subsidized Stafford loans from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent. The deal set Federal Stafford Loans for undergraduates at 3.85%, Graduate PLUS loans at 5.4%, and Parent PLUS loans at 6.4%.

While college-bound students and their families breathed a collective sigh of relief, the deal came with a catch: student loan interest rates would be tied to the health of the economy. If the economy improves as economists predict, rates would increase in coming years. In fact, rates would likely climb higher than they were this past spring.

For families who have saved for college with a 529 plan, the new deal presents an interesting conundrum. Should you use the funds in your account now to pay for your student’s education or save them for the future, when it might be more expensive to borrow?

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Fall college checklist for high school students

Posted on September 5th, 2013

Even if you’re only a high school freshman, it’s never too early to start thinking about college.

Planning ahead can help keep high school students on track so they are well-prepared for college, instead of scrambling to choose a college and fill out applications at the last minute.

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Generations of student loan debt

Posted on August 29th, 2013

We often hear about student debt as a problem for recent college graduates in their 20s and 30s. But it’s not just young adults who are struggling to pay back their loans. Their parents are suffering as well.

Americans ages 50-59 owe a combined $112 billion in student loans. That’s triple what they owed in 2005. Why the dramatic increase? Because many parents are taking out additional loans to pay for their children’s education, despite still paying off their own student loan debt.

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Infographic: Student debt in the U.S. by generation

Posted on August 25th, 2013

Ever wondered how today’s college graduates (and their student loan debt loads) compare to those of previous generations? This infographic from Manilla explores how tuition, college fees, and student loan debt have skyrocketed since today’s graduates’ grandparents went to school. Even adjusting for inflation, the cost of college, particularly at private universities, has gotten out of […]

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President Obama unveils plan on college affordability

Posted on August 22nd, 2013

"Whether we're talking about a 2-year program, a 4-year program, a technical certificate, the bottom line is that higher education cannot be a luxury. It's an economic imperative. Every American family should be able to afford to get it." -- President Obama

In his visit to Western New York today, President Obama unveiled a series of higher education reforms aimed at making college more affordable. A new way of ranking colleges His ideas include creating a new rating system for colleges that would judge schools on measures like tuition, graduation rates, debt and earnings of graduates, and […]

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Decoding the language of financial aid

Posted on August 9th, 2013

Inside Higher Education published a great piece on understanding “financial aid speak” from college financial aid offices. To the average parent, it can feel like college financial aid representatives are speaking a whole different language.

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Parents putting less money toward college

Posted on July 23rd, 2013

As the weak economy continues to impact how Americans spend their money, parents are putting less toward their children’s college education than in previous years. Parents put an average of $5,727 from their income and savings toward each child’s college costs in the 2012-2013 academic year, down more than a third from $8,752 in 2009-2010.

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“A generation that can barely stand on its feet”: The plight of the millennial parent

Posted on June 13th, 2013

"He wants his sons to have the same quality of education he did, and the professional advantages that came with it. But he does not see how this is possible. When his sons are old enough for college, he will still be paying back his own student loans. With wages stagnant and tuition fees well outpacing inflation, there is little chance he will be able to afford their education. His children will be back where he started." -- Sarah Kendzior

While the millennial generation has been labeled as lazy, entitled, and narcissistic, many people neglect to realize that this generation has entered a world with shrinking employment opportunities and mobility. For young people, jobs (especially good ones) are hard to find, and many are saddled with tons of college debt. And for young adults who are […]

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