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Last week financial aid officers at Texas A&M University - a school with over 54000 students - heard from seven different lenders warning that they would no longer be able to offer federal student loans a situation that has made more than a few borrowers uneasy. Dyneche Duffield an incoming college student headed to Houston Baptist University is uncomfortable with the prospect of having to establish a relationship with a new lender other than her local bank which used to offer student loans. "I would have much rather taken out a loan there than somewhere where I didnt know anyone" Duffield said. While students like Duffield may still be able to go directly to the Department of Education for their federal college loans or find those remaining lenders who are still offering private student loans (albeit with more stringent credit criteria that are making it harder for students to qualify) the magnitude of the problem within the student loan credit markets and how deeply it has permeated the college loan industry is alarming to many administrators and officials in higher education.
If your primary borrower starts missing payments or payment due dates however the lender will contact you. Normally by the time the lender is contacting you the loan youve co-signed is already past due and your credit rating may have already taken a hit. Keep in mind too that any legal remedies a lender has at its disposal for pursuing a loan debt can also be applied to the co-signer. These legal remedies include assignment of the delinquent loan account to a debt collection service and a possible court action. For delinquent federal education loans the government may seek to garnish your wages or seize any income tax refunds you have coming your way. In addition delinquencies or a default on any loans on which youve co-signed will appear on your own credit report with all the same adverse effects as on the primary borrowers credit report.
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Defaulted student loans. Your student loans dont have to be new to be eligible - even long-time graduates may be able to qualify for income-based repayment on college loans taken out years ago. But you cant be in default on your loans. To qualify for an income-based repayment plan any federal college loans you have in default will need to be rehabilitated first. Its crunch time for college students trying to secure the money they need for the fall semester. But with lenders continuing to suspend their student loan programs - the count now stands at 131 federal loan lenders and 30 private loan lenders - students may find themselves challenged to locate lenders that are still offering federal or private student loans. In an attempt to help lenders be able to continue making new federal student loans the government included a provision in the Ensuring Continued Access to Student Loans Act signed into law in May aimed at providing capital for cash-strapped lenders.
Because we know that borrowing to attend college is not going away steps to offset the bite of borrowing to attend college should be taken as far in advance as possible to reduce and manage your debt. Here are some steps to you can take to ensure you are borrowing responsibly. 1. Avoid Falling into The Loan Trap - If at all possible avoid borrowing; however if you are like most students attending college you have no other choice but to do so. When it comes time to borrow do not be tempted to borrow the full sum available to you personally on the loan loan of the loan doing so can give you a false sense of financial security. Often when you get the maximum amount of a student loan it is usually more than you can afford to repay. This usually happens when students take out a need-based loan.