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Education has its price: D.C. has highest student loans

Thursday - 4/12/2012, 3:54pm  ET

John Aaron, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - A new look at how much locals pay for education adds to the proof that living in the Washington area yields sky-high costs.

D.C. residents have the highest average outstanding balance on student loans in the country, at almost $37,500, according to the latest quarterly report from CreditKarma.com. The District is followed by Maryland at more than $33,700.

Virginia is also among the top ten, with students and graduates owing an average of just over $31,700 on their outstanding loans.

By comparison, Wyoming has the lowest average student loan balance, just under $22,900.

The expense doesn't just stop at student loans. Area residents have some of the highest levels of mortgage and credit card debt in the nation. The average outstanding mortgage balance of $293,495 in D.C. ranks behind only California and Hawaii. Mortgage balances average $238,422 in Maryland and $214,838 in Virginia.

D.C. residents also had the highest credit scores in the study, with Maryland and Virginia near the top as well.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)