In a world where student loans are a necessity for 3 out of 4 college students, you would think the number of men and women who a significant amounts of money would be about the same. Women outnumber men slightly at 4-year schools, while there is little discernible difference between enrollment when taking graduate, doctoral, and post-doctoral numbers into account. A new survey by PadillaCRT shows a much more concerning contrast.
Women who take student loans will end up owing more than $30,000 upon exiting school 42% of the time. This is in contrast to men who will only end up with a $30,000 bill 27% of the time. Though the difference doesn’t look so bad in those terms, the real burden becomes more apparent when looking at the total amount owed – which comes out to about $15 billion more per year for women.
Twice As Likely
It is also concerning that women who do have significant student loans (over $30,000) are twice as likely than men to feel like it will take 20 or more years to pay them off. Standard loan repayment plans are on a 10 year schedule but income-based plans do exist that can lower monthly payments, yet you will end up paying significantly more in interest.
Large amounts of student loan debt can have a big impact on an individual’s finances once they are out of college. The amount of disposable income that goes towards student loans can be substantial, especially if you enter a field that doesn’t pay very well. It only takes one late payment to cause a credit nightmare for years and tank your credit score (you can find your Transunion credit score for free here).
Experts say a good rule of thumb to stick to is not to take more student loan debt than the average annual salary for your desired field.