WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — The Biden Administration extended the freeze on federal student loan payments until August 31. Payments have been frozen since the beginning of the pandemic and were set to resume on May 1.
Penny Di Giovanna is a financial adviser with Semmax Financial Group in Winston-Salem. She recommends borrowers continue making payments if they can.
“It is a good opportunity if you're able to go ahead and make some payments so you can get that balance down in an interest-free environment and then if you can't I really like the idea of just getting yourself back in the practice of saving it and putting it aside because that time is going to come where you have to pay it again," Di Giovanna said.
The average debt per borrower in North Carolina is approximately $38,000. If borrowers are unable to afford monthly payments once they resume, Di Giovanna said there are income-driven repayment programs they can apply for.
“So, there's a lot of different options,” Di Giovanna said. “What I would say is it's very important that you know the options so get your facts, get all the information from the website that they provide to you, and then communicate."
Borrowers can check the status of their loans by visiting studentaid.gov.