New CU report highlights student loan problems using real consumer stories

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We support reforms to the financial marketplace that protect consumers from unscrupulous banks and lenders.

By Consumers Union on Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

Today, Consumers Union issued a new report about student loans, using real consumer stories to show how student loan debt is affecting consumers across the U.S.

We asked readers like you about their student loan experiences.  After reading hundreds of stories, we found that people from all walks of life are grappling with student loan debt – and the debt is having a huge impact on their lives as a whole.  Consumers told us about problems they had throughout the process, including:

  •  Confusing financial aid offers;
  • Borrowing too much or borrowing the wrong kinds of loans;
  • Having little to no options for refinancing or reducing monthly payments;
  • Unfair fees or issues with how payments are processed;
  • Trouble with loan servicers;
  • Unfair or deceptive practices; and
  • No relief from overwhelming debt, even after years of repaying.

The report also makes policy recommendations to address the problems consumers raised in their stories, including: better financial aid information and counseling; more flexible repayment and refinance options; more accountability for schools, lenders and servicers; and reasonable relief for struggling borrowers.

We believe the time is now to make the system fairer for everyone trying to get an education.

To learn more about our work on student loans, click here.

Do you or someone you know have student loans?  Have you experienced problems like the ones we describe above?  If so, please share your story with us.

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