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Millennials Delaying Major Life Decisions Due to Student Loans

Nearly half of millennials are postponing buying a new house due to their incurred student loan debt, a new TD Ameritrade survey has found.

The survey was conducted online by The Harris Poll from February 28 to March 14, 2019. 1,027 members of generation Z, ages 15 to 21, 1,026 millennials, ages 22 to 28, and 1,001 parents participated.

47 percent of millennials and 18 percent of members of generation Z said that they delayed plans to buy a new house due to the loans they had to borrow to cover their college costs.

More than half of millennials and generation Z members are also currently living with their parents and delaying moving out of these shared spaces due to student loans. When asked if they would be moving back in with their parents after college, mostly millennials said they would do so, while 82 percent of parents said they would welcome their children moving back home.

Some of these individuals are even paying rent to their parents. 38 percent of millennials and 22 percent of members of generation Z  pay an average of $500 per month to live at home.

Over one in five millennials said that they have also delayed getting married, having children and saving for retirement because of their loans.

Nearly 42 million Americans collectively owe $1.5 trillion in student debt, and 7.2 million individuals are currently in default on those loans. Borrowers of color are significantly affected by such loans.

A recent study conducted by the University of Illinois and the University of Michigan found that loans negatively affected the wealth accumulation of Black and Hispanic adults who owed an average of $14,670 when they graduated, compared to $2,946 for students of other races.

Among Black students, 55 percent of males and 45 percent of females default on their loans within 12 years of starting college. This number stands at 35 percent for both male and female Latino students.

Last month, Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT) introduced legislation seeking to forgive more than $1.6 trillion in student debt held by 45 million people across the country. It would also make two and four-year public and tribal colleges and universities tuition-free and debt-free.

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