Student loan debt, misunderstanding of process cuts many millennials from home ownership

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U.S. home prices soared in April at the fastest pace since 2005 as potential buyers bid up prices on a limited supply of available properties.

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Student loan debt is keeping many people who are now at the typical homebuying age from purchasing a house.

According to a study conducted by the National Association of Realtors and Morning Consultants, only 23% of student debt holders understood the cost of attending college before they took out loans and 35% did not fully understand their potential for earnings following graduation.

Home affordability continues to be elusive for many in the current market, but the trend is changing and markets are beginning to stabilize, but the correction may not be enough to help those with the financial burden from their college years.

“Younger Americans shouldn’t have to choose between education and homeownership, and NAR continues to pursue policies that ensure the American dream remains available and accessible for those still paying off their college education,” said NAR President Charlie Oppler.

According to the study, 51% of millennials said that student loan debt forced them to delay purchasing a home, but it has also stalled many from moving out of their parent’s house into an apartment. The study shows the situation is worse for Black student loan holders.

The NAR says that student aid programs should be simplified and that consolidation and refinancing opportunities, at a lower rate, should be made more readily available. In addition, NAR favors expanding tax preferences for employers who assist employees with their student debt as well as tax forgiveness for debtholders who have their debt forgiven or paid off by their employer.

While the NAR has been following trends in home buying among those holding student loan debt for years, this latest study takes into account the current federal government stimulus package and how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted debt in the U.S.

Under the current federal pandemic guidelines, federal student loan debt holders do not have to make payments and are not accruing interest. That ends on Jan. 31, 2022.

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