An Income Sharing Agreement, or ISA, is an alternative way for students to pay for university. Traditionally, students take out loans and take all the risk. If a student graduates from college with no job or a low-paying job, a university isn’t going to make up the difference.
This asymmetric risk profile is one of the reasons why I’ve been imploring people to attend a more affordable college. If you’re not already rich or don’t receive free grant money due to your genius, please don’t overpay for college. Further, be smart about picking a major in high demand.
Unfortunately, with the overall student loan debt amount ballooning to ~$1.6 trillion in 2020, I don’t think many people are paying attention. Good thing there’s an alternative to taking out student loans in the form of an Income Sharing Agreement.
Instead of taking out a student loan at a potentially high interest rate, with an ISA, a student agrees to pay a fixed percentage of their earnings for a fixed number of months.
In a typical ISA, students would agree to pay a fixed percentage of their income once they are employed and are earning in excess of a specified threshold salary. This threshold is usually $30,000 – $40,000, depending on the ISA.
An ISA is quite different from student loans, which accrue interest during college and regardless if the student finds a job or not. Further, student loan payments generally have at most a 6-month moratorium after graduation before payments are due.
It seems to me the an ISA is a win for the student and a win for the investor. Therefore, I’ve invited Edly, an ISA investment platform to write a sponsored post and share further insights about this fast-growing asset class.