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Begging To Pay Off Student Loans

How pitiful is this: A new Web site that helps college grads beg for money to repay student loans.

Borrowers start the process by signing up at and providing a copy of their loan statement.

lilyslist.comThen parents, relatives or even anonymous donors can use credit or debit cards to make contributions that are sent directly to the lender.

Donations are in addition to, not a substitute for, the borrower’s regular monthly payment.

The site is the creation of four moms concerned with student debt. President Jennifer Taylor got the idea while having a frank discussion about student loans with her daughter, Lily, now a freshman at the University of Iowa.

“She was horrified” at how much her education was going to cost, Taylor says.

Unfortunately, this isn’t a free service. Lily’s List, Inc. is a for-profit company. Grads pay $15 a year to sign up, and every contribution carries a $2.75 fee.

But we think has a future because student loans have become such a burden for so many former students and their families.

The average student graduates college with over $23,000 in debt, and a lot of them are having a tough times finding the jobs they need to pay that money back and begin their adult lives.

We also like that the site verifies the loans are legit and ensures that contributions make it to the lender.

We’ve seen Web-based pleas for help paying down student loans, usually through a blog that’s collecting money through PayPal, for example.

But there’s no real way to check that the sob story’s true, or that the money isn’t be used to fund a nice trip to Tahiti.

If takes off, Taylor says companies will be allowed to put ads on the site in exchange for donations to its participants.

It also hopes to attract anonymous donors looking to help grads from their alma maters.

So if you sign up, make sure to put in your school and any fraternity or sorority affiliation, and fill out your “about me” section.

You never know what can catch a donor’s eye.

Comments (5)
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5 Existing Comments
  1. Nancy said:
    on April 6th at 08:21 pm

    Glad to see this posting and hope that everyone with a student loan considers signing up for a Lily’s List account. I’m one of the founders and just wanted to clarify the reason for the fees in question above. The $2.75 transaction fee is simply what the banks charge to make a deposit from a credit card directly to a student’s loan account, and, by the way that expense is absorbed by the donor NOT the student. The $15.00 membership fee covers the cost of creating and hosting this site. When we grow enough to have some advertising revenue, which we also hope to share with our student members, it will most likely be eliminated AND right now, the first 100 members receive a $10.00 donation to their loan account from Lily’s List so the fee is actually only $5.00. Check it out !!

  2. Poor student said:
    on April 8th at 05:14 pm

    I was a poor student, and I worked so hard to pay off my student loan. If you can’t afford or you don’t wanna work hard, don’t go to college. What a shame!

  3. said:
    on April 9th at 06:33 am

    College costs have risen, no doubt about it.

    I would encourage students to be realistic about their interests and career before picking a college. For example, if you are interested in social work, do you really need a top notch liberal arts education that cause you to borrow $100K over 4 years. I think you need to understand you will be paying this debt back for years, so go to a state school!

  4. Garry said:
    on April 17th at 08:50 am

    State schools are great – if you can get in! Community colleges can be great too. The thing is, loans are probably necessary for most people no matter WHAT school they choose. I like the idea of Lily’s List because it’s just another tool to help out by re-directing gift money to loan accounts instead of jean pockets and what’s wrong with that? We’re all in it together.