Federally-Subsidized Loan Rates Double This Week - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Federally-Subsidized Loan Rates Double This Week

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Not only do students have to dig deep into their pockets to attend college, it now costs more to borrow money and pay it back.

Governor Rick Scott is calling Congress irresponsible for breaking for the July Fourth holiday without reaching a compromise to prevent student loan rates from doubling.

"It's going to make too much of a burden on so many of the college students today," said Kathy Saada, a Communications student at Florida State University's Panama City Campus.

She's just one of the students at FSU-PC that relies on Federally-Subsidized loans to attend college. Essentially, the government pays the interest rate while the student is enrolled in school and for six months after graduation.

However, on Monday, interest rates on these loans increased from 3.4% to 6.8%. Congress couldn't reach an agreement to continue rate cuts.

Saada thinks, "It's going to be hurting a lot of people, and it will probably stop a lot of people from coming to college."

The increase will only apply to loans dispersed after July First.

While the change is disappointing to a lot of students... Saada said she's not going to think twice. "I still want a better future, and I know the only way to that is to get my degree."

Kathryn Morgan with FSU-PC's Financial Aid office said an education is a good investment. "If you're going to invest in anything, invest in yourself."

But, if you need to borrow money, do so wisely.

"While you're in school and not required to make the payments, why not start making those payments back anyways? Fifty dollars a month, you can bring that down," said Morgan.

Morgan also suggests only borrowing the money you need and looking at scholarship and grant opportunities.