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Millions of Americans are behind on their student loans

The inability to pay for a college education is a huge problem facing many Tennessee residents. For many people, taking out loans is the only way they have to afford the tuition to obtain a degree. However, paying back those loans is often a difficult proposition and as recent numbers indicate, the number of borrowers who are behind on their student loan payments is alarming.

According to TIME Magazine, as of the beginning of this year only 57 percent of borrowers were making payments on their federal student loans. The availability of certain programs that help borrowers manage their payments appears to be helping since in the previous year only 54 percent of loans were being paid.

It was found that approximately one-third of the people not making payments on their loans had been granted a deferment, meaning they were given a temporary break due to unforeseen circumstances in their lives. Another third had not made payments on their loans for at least one month and the final third were delinquent on their payments for over one year.

Making payments may be particularly difficult for those who fail to finish their degrees, reports USA Today. The number of people behind on their loans who earned a bachelor’s degree is only four percent. That stands in stark contrast to the 21 percent of delinquent borrowers who not only have no degree but are no longer pursuing the program for which they obtained the loans. Family issues were the number one reason that people cited for why they dropped out of school. Other reasons included the cost of a college education, a waning interest in school and a desire to enter the workforce.

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