Sub Prime Meltdown Affecting College Students

The seemingly never-ending subprime mortgage crisis will now even affect teenagers. If you are looking for a private or alternative loan to pay for college, you will now be faced with tougher restrictions.

That, according to a report just out by financial aid guide Fin-Aid.

It says for student borrowers to qualify, they will need higher credit scores and will be hit with higher interest rates.

So, what should college students do now to prepare? John T. McElyea says watch your credit, saying "the loans you have, make sure you make payments on time and you'll be more likely to qualify."

Private student loan interest rates could climb by one percent to make up for increased costs.

However, one financial advisor predicts the mortgage crisis will extend far beyond student loans. Bill Hall of Edward Jones says "you're going to see them be much more careful about loans in the future, a lot more careful about the loans they're going to make.

Hall says parents should start saving money to send their kids to college before they are even born. He says tuition rates are going up at twice the rate of inflation, so the earlier you start saving, the better.