As Student Loan Debt Surpasses $1 Trillion, American Consumer Credit Counseling Launches Online Student Loan Debt Financial Center to Help Young Americans Manage Finances
The center will provide resources, including a financial management workbook, to help college students and recent grads manage student loans and finances during their college careers and help plan for their financial futures.
Boston, MA (July 24, 2013)—Today, national nonprofit American Consumer Credit Counseling announced the launch of its online Student Debt Financial Education Center and the release of its College Financial Management Workbook. The center will provide prospective students, current students, and their families with the information and resources necessary to make good financial decisions about college affordability and successfully maneuver the repayment process without relying on credit cards or additional loans.
For the first time, total student loan debt in the United States surpassed $1 trillion this year and now exceeds both credit card and automobile debt in the country.
“We are excited to launch this innovative Student Loan Debt Financial Center that will serve as a critical resource for the millions of Americans who are affected by student loan debt each year,” said Steve Trumble, president and CEO of Newton-based American Consumer Credit Counseling. “Student loans are often the first major debt that many young Americans incur, which is why it is so important that they understand the long-term implications of their student loan terms and know how to properly budget and manage their finances both during and following their college career.”
Approximately two-thirds of all college seniors now have student loans, which average about $26,600. These loans take an average of eighteen to twenty-two years to pay off and, according to a 2012 online survey by American Consumer Credit Counseling, are forcing many young American college grads to postpone major financial milestones such as marriage, purchasing a home or saving for retirement.
“Student loan debt is a tremendous burden on America’s young consumers, and the problem is only escalating,” said Trumble. “When people are unable to start saving in early adulthood because of large student loan debt payments, it can dramatically alter the course of their lives and impact future financial decisions.
National nonprofit ACCC created the Student Loan Debt Financial Center to serve as a comprehensive resource containing financial literature targeted at college and post-college age Americans. The center includes budgeting advice to help create a plan for paying off student loans, student debt calculators, loan repayment plan summaries and a Financial Aid 101 page to help students find alternate funding to finance their educations.
In addition, the Financial Workbook for College Students focuses on teaching students about banking, budgeting and credit, and provides them with tips to save on food, transportation, entertainment and clothing. The workbook also provides critical advice on how to effectively build credit and wisely choose a credit card.
“Even though more and more young Americans are opting not to have a credit card, it is still critical that they understand how to build good credit because it will impact their ability to purchase a home or buy a vehicle,” said Trumble.
According to a recent study released by credit score provider FICO, average credit card debt has dropped from $3,073 to $2,087 per person in the 18-to-29 age group since the recession in 2008. Also, the number of Americans in this age group not using credit cards has doubled since the recession, with 16 percent of all young consumers having no credit card at all by the end of 2012.
American Consumer Credit Counseling’s certified and experienced counselors offer various financial education, counseling and debt management services to help consumers achieve long-term financial health and stability.
ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization, that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:
- For credit counseling, call 800-769-3571
- For bankruptcy counseling. call 866-826-6924
- For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
- For more information on financial workshops in New England, call 800-769-3571 x1980
- Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com
About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial health through education, counseling, and debt management. ACCC provides individuals with practical solutions for solving financial problems and recognizes that consumers’ financial difficulties are often not the result of poor spending habits, but more frequently from extenuating circumstances beyond their control. As one of the nation’s leading providers of financial education and credit counseling services, ACCC works with consumers to help them with the best plan of action to reduce their debt and regain financial stability. ACCC is accredited by the Better Business Bureau and holds an A+ rating. It is also a member of the Association of Independent Consumer Credit Counseling Agencies. For more information or to access free financial education resources log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit TalkingCentsBlog.com.