RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Precious Wack is a registered nurse in the Triangle who will have to start repaying her student loan debt.
"It's making it hard because the payments are going to be twice as high and it's not as easy as it was back then because of inflation and the cost of things being more expensive," Wack said.
Wack joins more than 40 million borrowers with outstanding student loans just as several retailers, including Target and Walmart, are concerned about the financial effect ahead of the holiday season.
"A lot of things that were leisure that I was hoping to save money on, I can't do," Wack said.
College student Meghan Czerwinski said it is a little nerve-wracking to take out loans, especially as a freshman.
"That means three more years of loans building up, and then as I head into grad school to be a vet(erinarian), those loans would also build up," Czerwinski said.
New survey data from Nationwide Retirement Institute shows that 61% say the resumption of payments has negatively affected their long-term planning and financial stability.
UNC Chief Economist Gerald Cohen said while he doesn't believe student loan repayments will ignite a recession, he's concerned about the higher interest rates and inflation. However, the economy is quite healthy, according to Cohen.
"I also think that we still have a level a high level of savings, excess savings that we had from the pandemic," Cohen said. "It's a big number for people that have to pay those loans back. On an overall economic perspective, it's not a huge number. So it's going to be hard to see the impact."