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Best & Worst Cities for Student Loan Repayment

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Student loans are not only the second largest component of household debt, after mortgages, but also the component with the highest rate of delinquencies.

The distribution of those delinquencies varies widely, as a new report from Student Loan Hero shows. The organization, which advises student loan borrowers on managing their debt, studied a sample of credit reports from more than 435,000 anonymous student borrowers living in 100 of the country’s largest metro areas. The researchers calculated the percentage of borrowers who were at least 90 days late in making their payments as well as the percentage whose loans had gone into collection or were written off by the lender.

What they found was an average delinquency rate of 18.8%, which is quite high considering that the delinquent rate on consumer loans of the top 100 banks was just 2.3% in the third quarter, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

With the exception of Toledo, Ohio, the top 10 metro areas with the highest delinquency rates based in the South. Four are in Florida, two each in Tennessee and Louisiana.

The top 10 metro areas with the lowest delinquency rates were located in the West and Northeast, and ranged from Seattle to Boston. Two are in California.

The delinquency rates appear closely related to income levels and educational achievement within their home states.

Check out the above slide show for the five metro areas with the highest delinquency rates for student loans and the five areas with the lowest delinquency rates, according to Student Loan Hero.

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