Registrato: 29/06/19 09:35
|Parents are genetically-programmed to help their kids any way they can. This is certainly true for the parents of infants , toddlers, and children, whose parents generally take care of their safety, nutritional , and educational needs. And, even though the degree of parental aid starts to lessen a bit as the kids get ready to leave the house, for most families it extends well into adulthood. Supporting the kids' efforts in getting into - and sometimes paying for - college is no exception.
For families with college-bound young people, the time of preparation for college is an exciting one. The anticipation of the new educational , social and career-oriented vistas awaiting the young person can be a lot of fun for both parent and offspring.
One of the primary ways that parents can help their child entering college is to help support their collegial journey financially. College tuition is expensive and is getting more so with each passing year. Even when attending a public school at in-state resident tuition levels, off-campus living expenses and books make the entire experience costly no matter what.
Ways Parents Help Kids with College Tuition
To lighten this financial load, there are a number of ways that parents can help with their kids' college tuition. This can include, for example , saving for years via a college savings plan, such as a 529 plan. It can also include a one-time financial gift at or around high school graduation. But, for many parents who have not had the opportunity to save money for their kids' education over the years but who still want to help, one way to do so is to so-sign on their student loan.
How Co-Signing a Loan Works
Having a parent co-sign on a loan means that both the parent and their child's name are on the loan itself. In that case , both people are effectively taking out the loan, rather than just one or the other. Both people must provide their personal information for the loan, provide identification, and be present at the signing of the loan. And , both are responsible for paying it back.
Risks of Co-Signing a Student Loan
Any time you put your signature on a document, you are wise to fully understand the implications what you are doing. This is especially true in the case of loan documents.
Parents considering co-signing a student loan often wonder about the potential risks of doing so. The reality is: co-signing a loan means that you are responsible for the debt that your child is about to incur. And, you would be responsible for paying it back if your child for some reason defaulted on the loan. Here are the worst-case scenarios after co-signing that could put you at risk:
1. Your child just decides to not pay back the loan.
2. Your child falls behind on payments even though he or she is trying to pay it down.
3. Your child becomes ill andor dies and therefore cannot pay back the loan.
In any of these cases, you will be responsible for paying back the loan if you co-sign. Not doing so could severely hurt your credit score.
note: for some federal loans , the parent may not be responsible for paying back the loan upon their child's death. However, this is almost never the case for private or university loans.
Alternatives to Co-Signing
If you believe that co-signing a loan is too risky, you and your soon-to-be-college student offspring have other alternatives. Your student could try to get the loan by himself or herself, without your co-signature. Or , your child can choose to attend a less expensive school. Finally, your child may decide to work part-time during college to help pay for school.
Before co-signing a student loan, be sure you understand all of the implications in terms of your responsibility for paying the loan back should your child not be able to do so in the future.
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