Students Struggle to Pay Loans Back During Economy Slump

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Higher education doesn't come cheap.

Rising tuition costs at colleges and universities are forcing many students and families to take out student loans.

"Powers higher than me are battling this situation. It has become a political time bomb; the cost of our education and our ballooning student loans. Politicians in congress are working on it,” Alex McMahan, asst. director of Financial Aid at T.U. said.

With a slumping economy, students are trying to work more and spend less so they can afford gas and pay their loan bill.

"I have to spend $300 to $400 dollars a month versus what I had to pay a couple months ago. So, it really kicks your butt. The difference is actually what you have to pay on a student loan," James Lindsey, a Troy Dothan senior said.

And, they have no choice. If one defaults on their student loans, they could face some serious consequences that could ruin their credit.

"There are many ramifications; they could have their wages garnished, they would lose their income tax return, their stimulus check," McMahan added.

For those who have graduated school and are having difficulties paying back student loans, you may want to contact your lender about a deferment plan. If that is not an option, you could contact the U.S. Department of Education to see if there is something they can do to help.

Financial aid advisors say that during deferment, it is best to pay the interest on the loan, so when it comes time to pay the full amount, it is not inflated.

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