Upper Middle Class are Struggling with Student Loan Debt Too

High income and upper income families have student loan debt tooWe’ve mentioned before that the average student loan borrower has $25,000 in student debt (which is quite a lot of debt when you think about it!) but we haven’t told you before that even upper-middle-class families are taking on significant student loan debt in order to send their kids to college.

Believe it or not, these families often have more student loan debt than the average. According to a report published yesterday, a surprising 25% of households with annual incomes between $95,000 and $205,000 have student loan debt, while across the U.S. as a whole, only 19% of households have student loan debt (although that’s still a high percentage).

Even more surprising, those upper-middle-class families with student loan debt have an average of $32,869 worth of loans.

That number is substantially higher than the national average and, according to the report, it represents $6,000 more than what those families owed on average in 2007 – clearly the burden of student loan debt is increasing even for relatively affluent families.

So if this applies to you, what should you do?

If you’re concerned about how you’ll pay your student loans, we’d recommend looking at these programs (which you can learn more about at our Student Loan Debt resource center):

  • Income-Based Repayment – If a young graduate is not earning much income yet, they might be eligible for this program which would reduce their student loan payments to 15% of their disposable income, regardless of the income of their parents.
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness – Any student loan borrower who works in a qualifying public service job for 10 years can be eligible to have their loan balance forgiven, regardless of their parents’ income level.
  • ReadyForZero – You can use our free online tool to make a plan for paying off all your debt, including student loans and credit cards. (We’ve heard that it works pretty well!)

Have any questions? Let us know in the comments below and we’ll try to help!

Image credit: stylephotographs

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