Student loans are now the largest source of consumer debt outside of mortgages. In 2012, total outstanding student loans reached the $1 trillion mark. Two-thirds of graduates are finishing their bachelor’s degrees with debt that averages nearly $30,000. At the CFPB, we’ve created many resources for students to help them understand their options both before and after they decide to take out a loan for school.
1. The growing student debt problem
The CFPB offers online tools for students who are trying to pay for college, such as our 2011 Know Before You Owe project which helps potential borrowers compare costs. We also have informational resources for readers seeking to know more about the student debt problem. For more information about the student debt problem, read our 2014 mid-year report about the issues related to co-signing a private loan, and participate in the conversation online at #studentdebtstress.
2. Repaying student debt
For students looking for information about repaying student debt, the CFPB offers an online tool that provides information and advice for optimizing how you pay off student loans based on individual information. There are also sample letters to send to student loan servicers and collectors, and guides for borrowers working in public service.
Remember: Borrowers who run into trouble can submit complaints directly to the CFPB!