Federal student loan payments resume

Student Loan Payments Restarting
Published: Oct. 1, 2023 at 6:30 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - After more than three years...the government’s halt on student loan payments is over. Both current and former college students are not ready for those payments to restart.

“Ugh, I’m not looking forward to this at all,” said Payden Wilson, a current, 5th-year VCU student. “I’m upset, I don’t appreciate how the government keeps flip-flopping, I had to get loans,” she said.

A former ODU student feels similar to Wilson.

“Oo, I knew this day was coming, but dang, like I didn’t want to see it,” said Austin Greenhill, who graduated from ODU in 2019.

According to Federal Education Data, the average student loan borrower owes over $37,000. This means they’re paying up to $300 monthly on top of other monthly bills.

“I do pay rent, I pay for my phone, I pay for my car, I pay for a lot of things, so, unfortunately, this does set me back,” Wilson explained.

There is something you can do; first, figure out who your loan provider is. Once you do that, you can apply for the ‘SAVE’ plan. It’s replaced the former revised pay-as-you-earn plan. According to studentaid.gov, the program could decrease monthly payments and even eliminate remaining interest - if eligible.

Greenhill had some advice for current students... he said it’s best to take it one payment at a time, try to cut down on unnecessary expenses or subscriptions and make sure to prioritize your bills.

“Just what’s most important right now, like what’s needed to be paid right now,” Greenhill said.

If you need help with your loan, make sure to visit your loan servicer’s website for vital information.

According to the government’s student aid website, you can expect to get a billing statement or notice at least 21 days before your payment is due, but if you don’t get one, reach out to your loan provider.