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According to a new survey, one in five young Americans don't think so and plan to opt out of going to college. The same survey shows that nearly 73 percent of young Americans say they would choose a less expensive school to avoid going into debt.
Chris Hogan, author of "Everyday Millionaire," shared some tips with FOX Business' Neil Cavuto on how Gen Z and millennials can avoid raking up too much debt.
Hogan said students should know that higher education is a good thing, but taking on "astronomical amounts of student loan debt" is not. He said what students often don't realize is that it can impact their entire life.
“We’ve got young people wandering into student loan offices signing documents they don’t understand, for payments they can’t afford,” the author said.
Part of the reason it can be dangerous is because the loans can linger for a long time. Hogan pointed to a survey that shows that one in five millennials expect to pay off student loan debt past the age of 50.
Hogan said he would really want young people to avoid student loans altogether, but sometimes that is not possible. So he offered advice for parents and students alike.
For parents, Hogan said it is important to teach kids and give them the skills they need to be successful early on.
“I think the biggest thing we can do as parents is to help our young people grow up to become adults,” he said. “So let’s have a plan. Let’s teach them how money works. Let’s not teach them to be co-dependent, let’s teach them to be independent.”
He also urged students to avoid taking out loans if they know they cannot pay them off. But, if they already have loan debt, he advised them not to panic.
“If you already have student loan debt, don’t beat yourself up," Hogan said. "Get serious about making sacrifices. Start budgeting. Start taking on extra jobs to attack it. But if you are in school, and you’re about to go back, let’s not sign on for anymore student loan debt.”
He also cautioned students that it is OK if they take longer to graduate, as long as they do not leave with "that souvenir of a student loan debt.”
He said students should instead be "allergic" to debt and "attack" it early on, even if that means using the "debt snowball," or paying of smaller debts before bigger ones.