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Is student debt holding back a housing recovery?

Tuesday - 2/18/2014, 7:20am  ET

A new analysis shows that loan applications for home purchases have dropped 20 percent in the past four months compared with the same period a year ago, and experts think student loan debt may be to blame, the Washington Post reports.

That's because first-time buyers are not stepping up to bridge that gap, accounting for about 30 percent of home buys over the past year, and that's far below the industry norm.

Where's the connection with student loans? That debt has tripled from a decade earlier, to more than $1 trillion, and young college graduates aren't earning as much as they once did.

The result is that many young adults can't save enough for down payment or qualify for a mortgage.

© 2014 American City Business Journals, Inc.