Oct 12, 2023 - News

Chart: Georgia's outstanding student loan debt

Outstanding student loan debt in Georgia
Data: U.S. Department of Education; Table: Axios Visuals

Federal student loan repayments are back after the pandemic paused interests for over three years.

Why it matters: The repayments hit home for more than 40 million Americans who collectively owe more than $1 trillion in student loans. And Georgia borrowers on average carry among the highest amounts of student loan debt in the country.

Zoom in: More than 1.6 million people in Georgia had federal student loan debt as of June 30, according to the U.S. Education Department. Their collective balance totals $70.6 billion.

  • The largest share of people who borrowed loans are between ages 25-34 at 559,500.
  • But the borrowers between ages 35-49 owe the biggest share at $28.8 billion.
  • The national average balance for student loan borrowers is $35,210, Forbes reported in July. One of the five states with the highest federal balance is Georgia at $40,268.87.

Catch up quick: The White House approved $9 billion in debt forgiveness for 125,000 Americans last week.

  • The relief comes from fixes in income-driven repayment plans and public service loan forgiveness.
  • Borrowers who are totally and permanently disabled also receive automatic relief.

Details: Due dates will vary. The Education Department says borrowers will get a bill with a payment amount and due date at least 21 days before payment is due.

  • Student loan interest resumed accruing on outstanding balances on Sept. 1 after Congress prevented further extensions of the payment pause.
  • If you didn't refinance your loan during the pause, your loan interest will accrue at the same rate as before the pandemic.

Scam alert: Government websites say scammers will try to fool folks out of their cash with robocalls, emails and text messages claiming to eliminate their student loan debt.

Be smart: Late payments won't be reported to credit bureaus or negatively affect your credit scores through Sept. 30, 2024.

Plus: Sign up for SAVE, the new income-driven repayment plan estimated to save average borrowers about $1,000 per year, according to the White House.

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