The high cost of student loans is continuing to affect Americans’ life choices, to the point that many people say they would have selected a cheaper way of getting a college education if they had it to do over.
More than eight in 10 American adults with student loans say they have made personal or financial sacrifices because of the loans, according to a new study by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Half of those surveyed said that they delayed retirement account contributions in order to make student loan payments, and 46 percent said they’d take a second job to help with the debt. The survey found that student prompted 40 percent of surveyees to live with roommates rather than alone, and 40 percent had put off buying a house.
“Recent graduates can face sticker shock when they get their initial student loan bill in the mail,” Greg Anton, chair of the AICPA’s National CPA Financial Literacy Commission said in a statement. “For many, it’s their first realization that making the monthly payments will require financial and lifestyle sacrifices.”
Among those surveyed, 20 percent said they’d postponed marriage due to student loans and 19 percent had delayed having kids.
A majority of Americans with loans said that they would have changed their educational experience if they could do it over, with 36 percent saying they’d have gone to community college for two years, and 34 percent saying they would have attended a public university over a private one.