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Meet Ash Cash, Our Money Expert

AshCash

Ash Exantus (Ash Cash) has established himself as a thought leader and trusted voice with corporate America, colleges, churches, and community-based organizations. Through his message of fiscal responsibility, entrepreneurship, and wealth empowerment, he has become a regular speaker at national conferences across the country. Ash has been featured on popular, national media outlets such as CNN, The New York Times, WSJ, American Banker, CNBC, TheStreet.com, Black Enterprise, Essence Magazine, Ebony, BET, Pix11 Morning News, and countless others.

Ash is currently the Director of Financial Education and Senior Financial Empowerment Coach at BankMobile. He has also lent his expertise as a Personal Finance Expert and Contributing Writer for Experian, Credit Karma, RadioOne, The Huffington Post, MSNBC, and AllHipHop.com. He is the host of his own radio show titled The Ash Cash Show, which airs every Sunday at 1pm on WHCR 90.3FM NY with a current reach of 2.2 million listeners as well as several podcast sponsored by BankMobile as part of the BMPowered Podcast series including FreeLife Fridays & Money Mondays w/ Ash Cash.

Til Debt Do Us Part: How to Trump Student Loan Debt

Once upon a time and not too long ago there were three things that were certain in America; death, taxes, and student loans. You couldn’t escape any of the three, but now due to some proposed changes in the law, student loans may be escaping from that list. As President Trump transitions into his role as Commander in Chief, one of the things he has promised is an income-based repayment plan that will allow borrowers to receive a cap on their monthly student loan payments based on their income and then have their student loans forgiven after a certain period of time. As it stands currently, Americans owe nearly $1.3 trillion in student loan debt, spread out among about 44 million borrowers (REF1), which is now the second highest form of consumer debt behind mortgages (REF2).

For many, the student loan burden is too much to bare since the average borrower owes $29,000, and roughly 11% of borrower’s default on their loans (REF1). And just in case you need more context, more than two-thirds of students graduating from American colleges and universities are graduating with some level of debt; 70% to be more exact (REF3). Of those numbers, 13% are considered unbanked and 25% are considered underbanked, which means that it is those who can’t afford to pay back their loans who are burdened the most.

While President Trump is proposing that your students’ monthly student loan payments be capped at 12.5% of their income and after 15 years of monthly payments, their remaining student loan debt would be forgiven (REF4), but what are some steps that they can take now? As you know discussing the importance of managing debt and the pitfalls of bad credit is vital, as well as helping them understand how to properly manage their money but the following are 3 tips that you can also use to further help them:

  1. Create a Budget That Allows Them to Effectively Tackle Debt – In a perfect financial world, 50% of someone’s income should be allocated towards expenses, 30% should be allocated towards saving, retirement, and investing, and 20% should go to discretionary expenses aka having fun. But since this is not possible for many to do, it is important that students are guided through what percentage of their income should be allocated to debt and expenses. Coming up with realistic numbers that students can commit to is more important than coming up with a plan that they will most likely not stick to.
  1. Help them Understand Their Banking Options – With the average student loan debt as high as it is, it is no wonder that finances have become the number one reason why students drop out of college. Helping students understand their banking options are vital to managing debt because a person who is unbanked or underbanked pays an average of $100 more per month on fees. Knowing their options will not only save them money that can be allocated towards their debt, but also saves them time.
  1. Create an Accountability Partner Network – Those who have a support system are more likely to follow through with their goals. Either because they do not want to be embarrassed by failing or not wanting to let anyone down; an accountability partner can be the key to success. Helping your students create an accountability partner network can help them manage their debt better. Creating financial empowerment groups on campus can be the right first step in this direction.

If you are interested in having Ash come to your school to work with your students or administrators on financial literacy workshops please email aexantus@BankMobile.com or call 929.375.6809. He is also available for keynotes as well.

References

REF1: U.S. Student Loan Debt Statistics for 2017 | Student Loan Hero
https://studentloanhero.com/student-loan-debt-statistics/

REF2: America’s growing student-loan-debt crisis
http://www.marketwatch.com/story/americas-growing-student-loan-debt-crisis-2016-01-15

REF3: How The $1.2 Trillion College Debt Crisis Is Crippling Students, Parents And The Economy
http://www.forbes.com/sites/specialfeatures/2013/08/07/how-the-college-debt-is-crippling-students-parents-and-the-economy/#7474ae9d1a41

REF4: Trump’s Plan To Make Student Loans Great Again
http://www.forbes.com/sites/zackfriedman/2016/12/14/trump-student-loan-repayment/#4956901d4f65

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