Baby Boomers burdened by college loans

Student loan debt has been a hotly debated topic for a long time, but here's something you might not know about it. Some of the biggest borrowers are people you might not think are in a jam over school debt.

Millennials and school debt, yeah, we know that. Gen X? Yep, those folks, too. But Baby Boomers have a lot of school loan debt, too. Let's start this conversation by listening in to the managing director at Delta Community Credit Union.

"A lot of individuals over the age of 60, the average amount of student loan debt they have is somewhere between $35,000 and $40,000 and that seems to me to be a lot of debt to carry into retirement."

That's pretty jarring, isn't it? Now, some of that debt comes from the 2008-2009 market tumble. Folks lost jobs and went back to school. But a big part of that comes from Baby Boomers taking out loans, dipping into 401Ks and IRAs, and using credit cards to help pay for their children or grandchildren's college education.

"If you looked at all of the debt that parents take on for their children or money that they give to them, the bank of mom and dad would be the largest financial institution in the world," Ms. Bates added.

Here are four things that older people with loan debt will skip. Health screenings and doctor's visits in order to pay their monthly loan bills will be missed. They won't have enough money in retirement to handle their own bills. And, too many will now have to rely on the students they helped to help them later in life. And that's a burden on everyone. Across the board, any financial advisor will tell you that you don't dip into your retirement to pay for your child's education.