College students increasingly view debt as a normal part of life, according to a study released Monday by the National Association of Retail Collection Attorneys.
A survey of 500 students found that 25% think running up a debt for the occasional special event is acceptable and that 31% lack a plan to pay down their debts, expecting instead to pay them off when they are out of school and working.
The survey also said that 23% will ignore overdraft penalties.
However, many students seem to understand the long-term implications of having bad credit. For example, 92% agreed that failing to pay their debts can affect their ability to obtain credit in the future.
"Our poll results show that too many young people are living for the moment and are not preparing for their financial future," Robert Markoff, the president of the Washington trade group, said in press release. "The type of impulsive behavior our data demonstrates can have significant and lasting effects on students' lives."