Student loan debt has reached well into the trillions topping $1.6 trillion in 2023. With loan forgiveness still not on the horizon for many, borrowers across the country continue to shoulder their student debt.
The office of Federal Student Aid maintains a record of the specific student loan debt in each state. Certain states are worse off than others, which has led some states to take actions to curb over-borrowing.
It doesn’t come as much of a surprise that the states with the highest student loan balances are some of the most populated states in the country, while those with lower balances are the least populated states.
If you are looking to pay down your student loans, Credible can help compare multiple student loan companies at once and select the best interest rate option for you.
States with the highest total student loan balances
The third-largest state and the first-most populated state in the country is home to the highest student loan balance. It holds $146.7 billion in overall student loan debt.
Texas closely follows California in outstanding student loan debt, with $125.7 billion in student loans. Unsurprising, since Texas is the second-largest state in land and population.
Florida also has a hefty student loan burden, totaling $103.3 billion in outstanding loans.
4. New York
Home to millions of people and hundreds of universities, New York faces a total of $93.3 billion in outstanding student loans.
The last on the list of top states, Georgia’s student loan debt balance drops to $69 billion, less than some states, but still a significant burden for borrowers.
To help lower your outstanding student loan debt, it's helpful to use an online resource like Credible to compare fixed and variable-rate private loan options from multiple lenders, without affecting your credit score.
States with the lowest total student loan balances
One of the most rural states in the country, and the least populated, Wyoming has one of the lowest total student loan balances at $1.7 billion.
Although it’s the third least populated state, Alaska has the second-lowest total student loan balance at $2.4 billion.
3. North Dakota
North Dakota comes in close to Alaska with a total outstanding balance of $2.6 billion in student loan debt.
Vermont is home to just over 78,000 student loan borrowers and a total debt of $2.9 billion in student loans.
5. South Dakota
South Dakota has slightly more student loan debt than its neighbor to the north. Its total outstanding student loan debt is $3.6 billion.
If you’re considering a student loan, private loans may at times come with lower interest rates. To check your rate, visit Credible and compare your options from multiple lenders all in one place.
Several states have addressed the student debt crisis
To help students better understand the consequences of student loans, some states have rolled out legislation aimed at private student loan lenders.
"The loan servicing environment has changed drastically since the Department began working with multiple servicers in 2009," said Richard Cordray, the Federal Student Aid (FSA) Chief Operating Officer Richard Cordray in a press release.
A handful of other states have passed "Right to Know" legislation that helps high school students make fully informed decisions about the lenders they’re working with. West Virgnia’s law passed in 2020 provides students with a whole overview of the true cost of attending college and provides alternative career path options.
Other states are following suit, creating laws and resources for students before they ever begin attending college, in an effort to lessen the financial burden students take on.
To see what you'd pay on a private student loan – with or without a cosigner, you can visit Credible today to view a rates table that allows you to compare fixed and variable rates from multiple lenders at once without affecting your credit score.
Have a finance-related question, but don't know who to ask? Email The Credible Money Expert at firstname.lastname@example.org and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.