TODAY   |  June 29, 2013

Federal loan rates to double for students

7.4 million college students will see their federal loan rates double on the 1st of July. As the increase is set to hit the 38 million Americans saddled with loans, mortgage rates remain relatively low for those looking to buy homes. CNBC’s Sharon Epperson is interviewed by TODAY's Erica Hill.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> interest rates are taking center stage as millions prepare for increases on two fronts. monday, 7 million college students will see their federal loan rates double. meantime, mortgage rates hit a two-year high. sharon is here to explain the impact of both. good morning.

>> good to be here.

>> the startling number, 7 million americans could be affected by this. loans doubling to 6.8%. is there anything people can do to avoid this or in some way get a better outcome?

>> congress is not going to act, there's nothing they can do. as of july 1st , the rates are going to go up. if an agreement is reached, they may be able to retroactively start them. they are not close to coming to a compromise and likely we are going to see the rate hike on monday.

>> this impacts 7 million americans . it's lower and middle class americans . the people that need it most.

>> the problem is so much broader. we are talking 38 million americans that are saddled with student loan debt. nearly $1 trillion. the issue is not just the interest rate . the issue is the fact that many students are overborrowing. they are not planning on how long it's going to take them to graduate and how much money they need to cover the costs and how much money they are going to make when they come out, the careers they are going to have.

>> let's look at mortgage rates . they are at a two-year high. we are seeing promising real estate developments. are the contracts at a six-year high?

>> this is a good time. if you want to buy, you should think about it. this is a time when we are looking at rate that is are low relative to historic times. we are looking at rates that if you have good credit, if you can prove your income and have money for a down payment, those are the three factors to worry about. the fact the rates are a two-year high one percentage point or so, it is startling, but we are still talking 4.5%.

>> nice to see you this morning, sharon.

>> good to be here.