Not only is tuition up, but US loan costs, too

Although the cost of tuition is up an average of 13 percent this year, many college students are having trouble getting financial help from a once-dependable sources -- low-interest, government-guaranteed loans.

Loans are harder to get and are not the bargain they once were. Interest on the National Direct Student Loans is up from 4 percent to 5 percent for students and from 9 percent to 14 percent for parents. The Guaranteed Student Loan program's interest rate is 9 percent, but lenders now collect a 5 percent "origination" fee on the loans. The program now requires a need test for students whose adjusted family income is over $30,000.

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