Millennials starting their careers with $30,000 in student loans could enter retirement with far less savings than those without any education debt, according to research from the LIMRA Secure Retirement Institute. Millennials who start their careers with student loan debt could lack as much as $325,000 in savings by the time they retire, according to the study.
The average student loan debt at graduation increased 56%, from $18,550 to $28,950 between 2004 and 2014, according to Student Debt and the Class of 2014, a report from the Institute for College Access and Success. LIMRA findings, reported by CNBC, also show that more consumers closer to retirement age have student loan debt than in the past. "In 1989, just 4% of people aged 55 to 64 had education debt, but by 2013, that figure had grown to 30%,” according to the article.Millennials without student loans are 60 percent more likely to maximize their employer match in a retirement plan compared to those who have education debt to pay, LIMRA found.
“With Gen Y being in defined contribution plans, the time for them to really get ahead is in their 20s and early 30s, but if they have a huge student loan, they really can’t do that,” LIMRA Research Analyst Michael Ericson said in the CNBC article.
Monthly student loan payments that burden young households are limiting their overall money available each month and savings for the future - such as for a down payment on a home or retirement, according to a report from Irene Lew, a research assistant at the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies.
Lew concludes that options for young borrowers such as deferral or forbearance to delay payments or avoid delinquency don't address the underlying problems of their low incomes and challenge finding low-paying jobs that contribute to the overall struggle of making student loan payments.