While college costs and student loan bills have soared over the past decade, some students and their families are finding ways to spend (and borrow) less.
by. Melanie Hicken
Borrowing reached its lowest level in five years as families paid for more expenses out of pocket and cut back on costs in a variety of ways, according to an annual survey of 1,600 college students and parents by Sallie Mae and market research firm Ipsos.
On average, college students and their parents borrowed 22% of total college costs in the 2013-2014 school year, compared to 27% two years ago.
Financial aid experts say that even a small reduction in borrowing can help students save thousands of dollars in future interest payments, and make it more likely that they will be able to afford those payments come graduation.
A key factor: a growing percentage of students are seeking to cut costs by attending two-year colleges instead of pricier four-year institutions.continue reading »