2020 was a transformative year for student loan benefits.
Between the CARES Act allowing for pretax treatment of student loan repayment to the President suspending interest payments for most the year, student loan repayment benefits gained more momentum than ever before, with thousands of major employers now offering some level of repayment to employees with student debt. After such a precipitous rise in the adoption of repayment benefits, we decided it is important to give everyone an update on the best practices and recent changes we are seeing most frequently within the programs on Goodly. We hope the three major takeaways below help to set your on the right track in terms of starting to develop a student loan benefit program, but if theres anything you'd like to dive deeper on please reach out to me at [email protected]!
Some of the common programs features and design attributes on Goodly in 2020 included:
- An Average Contribution Amount of $100 - During 2020, we saw the average monthly contribution amount paid by employers on our system reach $100 per month. This conclusion was reached both by calculating the average of every contribution across Goodly each month (mean average), as well as finding the most commonly picked amount (mode) by employers when they set up their Goodly programs. While we have seen these monthly contributions ranging from as low as $25 per month to as high as over $1000 per month, $100 is the most common amount on Goodly.
- A Rise in ParentPlus Coverage - More employers than ever before built out eligibility of their student loan programs in 2020 to include ParentPlus and other familial realtionships that result in an employee oweing on a student loan each month. While these types of contributions are generally thought of as less commonly supported by employers, we have just under half (48.5%) of our current users eligible to receive contributions from their employer to a ParentPlus or other familial loan, which is up significantly from just 15% in 2019.
- A Rise in 529 Coverage - As student loan repayment benefits programs sweep the benefits world, effectively working their way into the 2021 benefits conversation for every employer in the U.S., many employers with a signficant portion of employees that do not have higher education debt in the family have wondered how to roll out a program that works for all of their employees. To address this concern, Goodly launched 529 college savings support, which enables employers to offer contributions to both existing student loan debt and existing 529 savings plans. This approach has cemented itself as one of the most common program designs on Goodly during 2020 as more and more employers looks to take advantage of the flexibility on Goodly.
That's it - what we decided were the three most important updates on Goodly programs during 2020! As always, please reach out to me with any questions at [email protected]