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Student Loan Jitters

Student Loan JittersMore than eight out of ten parents are very or somewhat worried that student loan debt will affect their child’s ability to buy a home, car or other large purchase after college. Nevertheless, nearly all parents see the value of a college education.

Nearly four of five parents said they plan to help their child pay for college while sixteen percent of families don’t plan on contributing anything. While families want to help pay for college, parents routinely said they are worried about having enough money. The annual survey for Discover found numbers have remained fairly consistent with three out of four families saying they are very or somewhat worried about having enough money to cover college costs.

The number of parents who say their child should pay for most or all of their college education has increased for the past three years. In 2014, 15% of parents responded saying their children should pay for the entire cost of college, compared to 12% in 2012. Thirty-two percent of parents think their child should pay for most of their schooling, compared to 27% in 2012.

Parents also are split on whether they will assist their child with repayment. About half say they are likely to help their child repay loans, with 24% saying very likely and 28% say somewhat likely, compared to 58% in 2013.

When asked about student loans, slightly more than half of parents said their child plans to take out student loans to pay for college, with slightly less than half planning to use both federal and private student loans.

The Discover survey was conducted in May, 2014.

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