Loans

10 Best Private Student Loans

5 Mins read

If you’ve used all your scholarship, grant, work-study, and federal student loan options and still need money for school, private student loans can be a good option. Most private student loans require good credit, so it is advisable to have a responsible Cosigner to your application to help your chances of getting approval. A Cosigner can also help you receive a reduced interest rate, which will reduce the overall cost of your loan.

Private Student Loans are used to pay for college expenses. They come from a bank, credit union, or online lender rather than the federal government and require a credit check, unlike federal student loans for undergraduates. Private Student Loans are good options to pay college costs after you have borrowed the highest you qualify for in both funded and unfunded federal student loans. 

Private student loans are also more costly than federal loans, especially now that federal loan rates are at historic lows and normally don’t offer the flexible repayment options their federal equivalents do.

This guide will review the best Private Student Loans based on their Interest rates, Loan amounts, Repayment, Cosigner benefits, Fees, Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating, and Benefits.

10 Best Private Student Loans:

College Ave 

College Ave is one of the Best Online Private Student Loans, based out of Wilmington, Delaware. The lender’s main focus is to make a college degree more achievable by helping students and parents afford the rising cost of higher education. When you borrow with College Ave, you will have the advantage of its Multi-Year Peace of Mind. College Ave also allows you to select your repayment term and explains how the term and plan you choose can influence the long-term cost of your loan.

Sallie Mae

Sallie Mae is one of the most commonly known Private Student Loans based out of Newark, Delaware. It was formally a government entity in charge of servicing federal education loans. Then, between 1997 and 2004, Sallie Mae moved into a fully privatized bank and began offering private student loans. Sallie Mae dominates the largest share of the Private Student Loans Market today. It’s also extended its product offering to include credit cards, savings accounts, and more.

Sallie Mae borrowers enjoy the benefits of four months of free Chegg study help, Multi-Year Advantage, and no application fees. Multi-Year advantage helps returning undergraduate students with a Cosigner has a 95% approval rate for a future loan.

Private Student Loans

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Earnest 

Earnest is one of the online Private Student Loans. Earnest is based out of San Francisco, California. Earnest was founded to make higher education reachable and affordable for everyone. Earnest requires no fees. Some lenders market their student loans as having no fees, but this only applies to application fees and origination. Earnest, don’t charge any fees to apply, and you won’t be charged for paying off your loan early or any late payments. Earnest offers a longer than average grace period and the ability to skip a payment once per year.

Ascent 

Ascent is one of the online Private Student Loans based out of San Diego, California. Its student loan offering is exceptional compared to other Private Student Loans in that it offers three options: traditional cosigned, non-cosigned credit-based, and non-cosigned future income-based.

Borrowers looking for repayment protection will be happy to know that Ascent offers several deferments and forbearance options. Ascent’s college loans comprise active-duty military deferment, in-school deferment, and residency or internship deferment. Ascent offers temporary hardship forbearance, administrative forbearance, and natural disaster or declared emergency forbearance for those with financial difficulty.

SoFi 

SoFi is a mobile-first online personal finance firm based in San Francisco, California. It was the first company to refinance federal and private student loans in 2012. Since then, it has increased into almost all consumer lending markets, with over $50 billion in loans funded. SoFi attracts customers because of its members’ money, community, and career benefits.

The Money benefits include referral bonuses, financial planning advice from credentialed advisors, and member rate discounts.

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Rhode Island Student Loan Authority

Rhode Island Student Loan Authority (RISLA). It is a non-profit Private Student Loan based in Rhode Island that gives loans to students worldwide. It provides two different loan types for undergraduate students, each with fixed interest rates. One loan demands immediate repayment, and one lets you defer payments until six months after you leave school. The loans with the same rate make it easy to compare RISLA loans with others you’ve qualified for.

For borrowers who struggle to afford their loans after graduating, RISLA is one of the Private Student Loans to offer an income-based repayment plan, which limits payments to 15% of income for 25 years.

A.M. Money

Borrowers are eligible for A.M. Money loans based on their educational background and GPA, not their credit. A.M. Money company does not allow cosigners. A.M. Money provides an income-based repayment plan for up to 3 years for borrowers who need it. The minimum monthly payment on the plan is $50. A.M. Money costs a 4.5% origination fee, and unpaid loans default in 14 days unless otherwise specified by state law.

Funding U

Funding U’s rates are bigger than other Private Student Loans. The company is exceptional because it doesn’t make loans based on credit history and doesn’t demand student borrowers to use a cosigner. Borrowers are eligible for a loan based on academic and work background, current courses, graduation prospects, and likely future earnings. Funding U’s loan limits are comparatively low. Private Student Loans should be used cautiously, so ideally, borrowers won’t need them to finance larger gaps in funding.

Discover

Discover costs no late fees on its Private Student Loans, and it provides an interest rate discount if borrowers decide to pay the interest on the loan as it grows in school. Discover also offers many exclusive deferments, forbearance, and hardship payment options. Cosigner release is not available, though, and there is only one loan term: 15 years. No penalty is involved if the loan is paid upfront, and if you have the means to do so, paying off a student loan in less than 15 years could save you considerable interest.

Citizens Bank

Citizens Bank also makes its loans available to international students. It offers an additional 0.25% loyalty discount if a student loan borrower or their cosigner has an existing account with the bank. The cosigners here must wait longer to be released from the loan than many other Private Student Loans provide.

How to Compare Private Student Loans

You don’t have to wait for your school to decide how much of a loan you can handle; do the due assiduousness yourself. Professionals recommend borrowing no more than what you might earn in your first year of college because it can help you not have uncontrollable monthly payments after you leave school. When you review Private Student Loans, consider the following factors:

  • The amount you can borrow.
  • The general cost of the loan, interest rate, and fees.
  • When you must start repayment.
  • How long do you have to repay the loan?
  • What help do the Private Student Loans offer if you have a problem providing your pay?
  • Your credit score (lower scores get higher interest rates).
  • The available discounts, including autopay discounts.
  • If you can add a cosigner and if you can qualify for a cosigner release later.

This guide has covered the 10 Best Private Student Loans. Kindly ask questions and leave your view in the comment section.

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