Is this generation hobbled by the cost of student loans?

Today’s news story to look at is whether student loans are hobbling an entire generation.  This article from the NY Times (read here) is basically talking about how loans are showing the ability to keep people from leaving home, buying a house, getting a car, etc. because of the student loan payment they have.

Like most stories I try to stay out of the way of a political buzz storm but here are the two main points as I see them.

Personal Responsibility

I took my daughter to my Alma Mater this weekend (annual cost 60k) and jokingly told her to not enjoy it as she’s not allowed to attend.  Now if she runs into the same situation as me where she gets tons of scholarships, sure.  But as I look at what my wife would be if both my wife and I had major debt it would be crippling.

It is a parent’s job to lay out the responsibility for a child.  The same as you do not let kids play out in the middle of the road because it will kill them you don’t let them take out debt they cannot afford to pay.  At a minimum you must show them how devastating the payments will be down the road and make sure this is a situation they can take on.  My wife and I have already discussed this and will be certainly pushing our daughter towards in state tuition at the cheapest school there is as what I’ve found is truly no one cares what school you go to.

Out of control tuition

I tend to be a personal responsibility person but do realize that there is a major need for college reform.  So honestly I see both sides I just don’t think we can finger point at the school’s only.  I would love to hear both sides of the debate though so if anyone has an opinion lets have a civil and intelligent argument below!

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