The housing slump will continue as student loan debt rises, according to analysis from the National Association of Home Builders.
Since the third quarter of 2008, student loan debt outstanding has risen by $293 million, or 47.9%. All other forms of household debt, including mortgage debt, have fallen by more than $1.5 trillion, or 12.7%.
NAHB said this overall decline in debt is one of the factors associated with deleveraging or household balance sheet repair.
The number of troubled loans has increased recently due to an unemployment rate of 12.9% for people aged 20 to 24, compared to only 6.9% for individuals 25 or older, according to May statistics from the Bureau of Labor.
The link between rising student loan debt and the start of the housing crisis comes after a recent report from the Federal Reserve that showed national household wealth fell nearly 40% from 2007 to 2010 due to declining home values.
“As more and more parents face tighter budget restraints as a result of lower home values, this is forcing an increasing number of students to take out loans for tuition, essentially shifting some of the burden of paying for college from parents to students,” said Barry Rutenberg, NAHB chairman.
“Together, these findings should serve as an urgent wake-up call for policymakers to do their part to ensure a full-fledged housing recovery moves forward to restore the balance sheets of tens of millions of home owning families, create jobs and spur economic growth,” Rutenberg added.
In order to create both a housing and long-term economic recovery, Rutenberg thinks that leaders in Washington need to provide access to mortgage credit for qualified borrowers, support mortgage interest deduction and affordable downpayments for homebuyers, enact reforms for greater oversight that appraisals reflect true market values, and establish standard 30-year fixed-rate loans and adjustable-rate mortgages for working-class households