Student loans are a huge topic of conversation, especially in light of perpetually high tuition for college degrees.
However, it isn’t only millennials carrying the weight of large student loan debt on their shoulders. Baby boomers are now a demographic increasingly under financial instability from their student loan debt.
They’re the fast-growing group of people attempting to pay off their debt.
Although there are individuals over 50 paying off student loans for their own degrees, a large portion this demographic are actually paying off their children’s degrees.
This isn’t a small mortgage or a monthly car payment, it’s a mounting education loan. There is no commodity to back up a paper degree. Part of what makes student loans so scary is the insecurity akin to their nature.
People wonder, will they ever pay off?
That’s exactly why baby boomers are struggling with their student loan payments: they still owe over $23,000 on average.
The mounting debt has even caused some people to default on their student loans, resulting in the garnishment of their Social Security benefits by the government and their subsequent fall into poverty. Their budgets are crowded by medical costs, housing, and more.
So when it comes time to pay student loans, survival is prioritized. This causes a debt crisis for a generation stepping into retirement, not the workforce and greater incomes.
The generation typically associated with student loan debt – millennials – aren’t only facing financial struggles due to their college tuition, but also because of the recession.
Not only was it tough for millennials entering the work force during or near the end of the Great Recession to find jobs in the first place, but the ones they did find paid less than their baby boomer counterparts.
It took millennials longer to launch their careers in addition to the mounting student debt they accumulated, which prevented early savings. These financial realities play into the high percentage of millennials living with their patents, an effort that millennials capitalize on to cut down on expenses.
However, baby boomers are next in line to face financial troubles regarding their own student debt issues.