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Nelnet Student Loans Review: Why You Should Take Out A Loan From It

When taking out a loan, it is important to look for the best based on what your needs are. With this Nelnet student loans review, anyone who’s looking for either a private student loan or a student loan refinancing will have an idea of whether the lending company is worth dealing with or not.

Nelnet Student Loans Review

In an article published by Forbes online, it says that as of 2020, student loan debt in the United States has already reached about $1.56 trillion, which was collectively loaned by 45 million borrowers.

With such an increase in number, it is not surprising why student loan debt became the second-highest consumer debt category — next to mortgage debt.

While there could be a lot of different reasons behind the increase, one thing’s for sure, looking at it on a positive way, it says a lot about how people today (especially the young ones) value education that no matter what situations they’re in, they are likely to find ways – in this case, loan money — to be able to pursue education.

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In the country today, there are a lot of lenders around. While some are focused on providing usual types of consumer loans only, others provide student loans.

To be honest, there are a lot of student loan providers in the country today, and when they’re too many, it can get overwhelming sometimes. You know, choosing which one is the best among a sea of options.

One of the existing student loan providers nowadays is Nelnet. Thus, this Nelnet student loans review, which aims to provide all the important details every student loan borrower must know before signing a deal with the lending company.

In particular, we are going to provide answers to the following very important questions:

  • What is Nelnet?
  • What products does Nelnet offer?
  • What do borrowers need to know about Nelnet student loans?
  • Who qualifies for a Nelnet student loan?
  • How to apply for a Nelnet student loan?
  • What are the pros and cons of Nelnet student loans?

WHAT IS NELNET?

Nelnet was founded in 1996. While it does have several offices in different parts of the world, the company is headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Currently, Nelnet has over 6,500 associates working together to serve various communities and in making their customers’ dreams come true.

Nelnet is known for providing some of the best student loan rates in the country.

The company, primarily known as a student loan servicing company, also provides various services including consumer finance, telecommunications, and K-12 and higher education.

As a student loan servicer, the company works directly with borrowers — helping them, manage, at the same time repay their existing student loans.

Although the loans are owned by the federal government, the lending company contracts with the U.S. Department of Education to handle repayments of federal student loans.

Nelnet Student Loan Servicing is the student loan arm of Nelnet Diversified Solutions.

On its company website, it says that Nelnet operates in four particular business segments, which include the following:

  • Nelnet Business ServicesPayment technology, school administration software, and community management solutions for K-12 schools, higher education institutions, churches, and businesses.
  • Nelnet Communications ServicesConnects homes and businesses in Nebraska and Colorado with fiber internet, TV, and phone services.
  • Nelnet Diversified ServicesProvides customer service for student loan borrowers, technology related to student loan customer service, and outsourcing services for guaranty agencies.
  • Nelnet Financial ServicesPrivate student loans, student loan refinancing, and life and disability insurance to assist students and families.

The company is driven to ensure they get to live by the company mission to serve customers, associates, and communities, and to realize its vision of (as mentioned earlier) making dreams possible.

Meanwhile, if you want to know more about Nelnet student loan servicing, here’s an informative video created by Student Loan Planner. You should check this out:

WHAT PRODUCTS DOES NELNET OFFER?

When shopping for a student loan provider, it is important not just to learn about who and what the company is all about, but also the products and services they offer.

A lender with various options is ideal so as a borrower, you have a lot of choices to choose from. You know sometimes, some borrowers do not even know yet what they actually need until they get to see and understand what the available products are.

With Nelnet, we like the fact that it does offer various services. When it comes to repayment plans, in particular, Nelnet offers borrowers the following:

  • Standard Repayment Plan – This type of repayment plan is the most common plan. With Standard Repayment, what happens is that payments are spread equally all throughout the life of the loan. According to the Nelnet website, the required 120 payments for PSLF should be made under an Income-Driven Repayment Plan. Any payments made under the Standard Plan count toward the required 120 payments. However, it requires full repayment in 10 years, and the borrower would have no loan balance left to forgive.”
  • Graduate Repayment Plan – Unlike the previous one, with this plan, payments increase over time. Payment amounts increase every 24 months until the loan balance is fully paid. This type of repayment plan is ideal for people who are expecting to make more money in the future years. As their salary increases, they become more capable of making payments.
  • Extended Repayment Plan – With this type of plan, borrowers are given more time to repay the loan by allowing you to increase the repayment term on your student loan. It is important to note, however, that while this plan makes monthly payments more affordable, it will take a longer amount of time to pay off the loan (up to 25 years), and that borrowers will technically pay more interest.
  • Income-Sensitive Repayment Plan – This particular repayment plan can be used with Federal Family Education Loans (FFELP). It allows the borrower to adjust the minimum monthly payment based on his or her income for up to five years. However, it is important to note that after five years, the account will defer to either the Standard or Graduated Repayment Plan.
  • Income-Driven Repayment Plan – If you want a more affordable monthly payment, then, this plan is the best option. Your monthly payment amount is tailored to your income. However, to ensure eligibility, the borrower needs to submit his or her income and family size annually.

As you can see, the company has diverse options to choose from, and it all boils down to what you are most comfortable with, needless to say, what you can afford.

WHAT DO BORROWERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT NELNET STUDENT LOANS?

When looking for the right student loan provider, or any type of loan for that matter, make sure to do your own research. Do not just settle for a lending company because it is popular or because you saw an ad and you think the offer is good.

Always make it a point to check every single detail and compare it to other lenders. By doing so, you are doing yourself a very important favor – ensuring you are signing up with the best deal possible.

There are a few factors to consider when getting student loans, in this case, a federal loan repayment plan. This includes the following items:

  • Interest Rates
  • Loan Amounts
  • Loan Terms
  • Fees
  • Payment options
  • Deferment
  • Forbearance
  • Other Features

Now, let’s get into details —

Interest Rates

It is important to know that unlike other lenders since Nelnet is a federal student loan servicer, the rates they follow are based on federal student loans.

Currently, the interest rate of Direct Subsidized Loans and Direct Unsubsidized Loans for undergraduates is 2.75%. Meanwhile, the interest rate on Direct Unsubsidized Loans is 4.30% for graduate and professional students.

Meanwhile, for current or prospective students who opt for Nelnet private student loans, the company offers such loans through U-fi From Nelnet.

For this particular loan type, fixed-rate student loans start from as low as 4.70% while variable ones from 1.55%.

Loan Amounts

For Nelnet private loans, in particular, loan amounts start at $1,000 and can go as high as $125,000 for undergraduate programs, while $500,000 for graduate medical programs.

Loan Terms

Loan terms vary depending on the borrower’s eligibility, plus the repayment plan used.

Also, if the borrower has obtained the loan from other lenders that use Nelnet as their servicer, the rates as well as loan terms will depend on the lender.

Fees

Apart from interest rates, another important factor to consider when taking out a student loan or a repayment plan is the fees involved. Fees vary from one lender to another, thus, make sure to also look into this when shopping for a lender.

As mentioned earlier, Nelnet is a federal student loan servicer, which means it follows the rules implemented for federal student loans.

In this case, for Direct Subsidized Loans and Direct Unsubsidized Loans, Nelnet charges a 1.059% loan fee.

Payment Options

Once your loan application is approved, payments automatically come next.

Unlike other student loan providers, or in the case of Nelnet, a federal student loan servicer, the company does offer a variety of payment options such as the following:

  • Autopay – By choosing this method, your monthly payment is automatically deducted from your account. This is the most ideal payment method of all as it ensures you will never forget making payments. What’s also good about auto payments is that most lenders offer a lower interest rate when a borrower applies for this payment method.
  • Online Bill Payment (Through Your Bank) – Apart from autopay, another convenient way to make payments is through your bank’s online bill payment service. However, make sure to check with your bank first as some may incur a fee.
  • Multiple Payment Options – Nelnet provides its customers with various options to pay bills — could be through online, via mail, mobile app, or through telephone.

Deferment

Nelnet offers deferment options for borrowers who are going through financial hardship, unemployment, as well as those who opted to go back to school or are currently on active duty military services.

Depending on the borrower’s loan type, he or she may not accrue interest while on deferment.

Forbearance

For those who are working an internship, performing a specific type of community service, or those who are going through financial difficulty, you may check with Nelnet as you may be qualified to postpone payments with forbearance. However, it is important to note that all loans accrue interest while on forbearance that is why it’s highly recommended to pay at least the monthly interest to avoid interest capitalization. Furthermore, forbearance helps resolve delinquency on the borrower’s account.

Other Features

Apart from the above-mentioned factors to consider when considering taking a student loan or a Nelnet repayment plan, the lending company also provides the following additional loan features:

  • Due Date Adjustment – With Nelnet, adjusting payment due dates is possible. This is very helpful for those with multiple loans with different due dates. Just call Nelnet and ask them to adjust the dates to one particular date during the month so you get to pay them all at once.
  • Text Reminders – To ensure you get to pay your monthly payments on time, all you have to do is sign up for text alerts. This helps you keep reminded of your dues.
  • Bundling Similar Loans – Nelnet also allows borrowers to group their loans based on the qualities they have in common.

Contact Information

If by now you already have decided to apply for Nelnet student loans or that you want to know more about the products and services offered by the company, all you have to do is to get in touch with Nelnet through the following channels:

Phone: United States:

United States – 1-888-486-4722 (Service from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday)

International – 1-303-696-3625

Mailing Address:

Nelnet

P.O. Box 82561

Lincoln, NE 68501-2561

For California residents

Nelnet

P.O. Box 82578

Lincoln, NE 68501-2578

WHO QUALIFIES FOR A NELNET STUDENT LOAN?

At this point in our Nelnet student loans review, we are going to talk about who qualifies for a student loan for the said lender.

When you are shopping for a student loan provider, it is important to check the qualifications set by the company to ensure you are not wasting time and effort.

With Nelnet, since it is a federal student loan serviced, student loan borrowers are not able to get a loan directly from the company. Instead, the company will service federal student loans that borrowers obtain from the country’s Department of Education.

To put it simply, you need to check and ensure you qualify for a federal student loan from the Department of Education to be able to get the chance of getting a loan from Nelnet.

However, it is also important to take note that usually you do not get to decide who the lender would be. It usually depends on the department.

Anyway, to qualify for federal student loans, all you have to do is fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The borrower has to fill out the FAFSA for every school year that he or she hopes to get a loan for.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A NELNET STUDENT LOAN?

As mentioned above, student loan borrowers cannot go directly to Nelnet to apply for a loan (unless you are a private student loan borrower).

So, for those who are obtaining a service federal student loans from the Department of Education, all they have to do is to fill out a FAFSA — as mentioned earlier. Again, make sure to fill out the FAFSA for each school year that you hope to get a loan for. Make sure to complete the FAFSA as soon as you can because some sources of federal aid are limited.

Once you complete the FAFSA, you automatically become eligible for need-based loans like Direct Subsidized Loans, wherein eligibility for this type of loan depends on the household income.

When a student loan borrower’s course borrows through the Department of Education, he or she does not have the freedom to choose who the lender will be. Rather, it is the department that will assign you to a loan servicer like Nelnet.

For private student loan borrowers, you may proceed to Nelnet’s company website to kick off your student loan application process.

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF NELNET STUDENT LOANS?

This Nelnet student loans review will not be complete without our list of pros and cons. This basically sums up everything about Nelnet student loans. So, here they are —

PROS

  • Multiple Repayment Plan Options – Nelnet provides student loan borrowers with multiple repayment plans depending on what they can and cannot afford — as well as depending on how much you earn on a monthly basis.
  • Forgive Loan Balance – Through the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program or once the borrower has achieved a certain number of student loan payments, the remaining loan balance may be forgiven. This depends on the requirements set by the company.
  • Option for Loan Consolidation – There is an option for loan consolidation with the Department of Education.
  • Forbearance and/or Deferment – Nelnet allows loans to be put into forbearance or deferment if the borrower goes through financial challenges, are in a residency program, or have opted to go back to school.

CONS

  • Borrowers do not get to choose the federal loan servicer, which means it is likely that he or she may not end up with Nelnet. The Department of Education has the say who a borrower’s servicer will be.
  • The company has a lot of consumer complaints in the past that some thought it’s a scam.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON NELNET STUDENT LOANS

To sum it all up, Nelnet, just like other student loan providers out there does have its share of good and bad. While it may have failed a lot of borrowers in the past, the company continues to strive and be better — which perhaps is the reason why it still exits these days.

While we have provided you almost all of the essential information you need in this Nelnet student loans review, at the end of the day, it’s up for you to decide if you think this lender is worth a try or not.

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Commonbond Student Loans Review: Every Student Borrower’s Guide

Commonbond is worth considering if you are looking for a lending company that caters to financing a specialized degree. That said, this Commonbond student loan review will provide you the essential information you need to know.

Commonbond student loans review

According to a report published at Forbes online, as of 2019, student loan debt in the United States has been the highest ever recorder.

The latest student loan debt statistics show that there are a total of 45 million borrowers in the country as of 2019 who collectively owe more than $1.5 trillion in student loan debt.

Based on the current number, student loan debt has become the second-highest consumer debt category in the country — following mortgage debt, and higher compared to credit cards and auto loans.

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Furthermore, experts believe that the number will continue to rise in the years to come particularly this year with the recent crisis the world is facing. With people losing jobs, losing means to earn, the more likely that they will resort to getting loans.

Now, there are a lot of lending companies out there providing various student loan options. However, there are only a few that cater to specialized degrees such as a medical, dental, or MBA degree. Let’s be realistic, these degrees need a lot of money to get done.

Commonbond, a private lender that underwrites and originates all of its loans, is one of the few lending companies that provide student loan borrowers with the option to borrow money particularly to pursue a specialized degree.

If you are looking for one, you should check out what Commonbond has to offer, and see for yourself if it’s worth dealing with or not.

To help you assess, we are going to share with you essential information about Commonbond student loans for your reference.

In this Commonbond student loans review, we are going to particularly answer the following most commonly asked question about the lending company:

  • Who is Commonbond?
  • What are the student loans offered by Commonbond?
  • What do borrowers need to know about Commonbond student loans?
  • Who qualifies for a Commonbond student loan?
  • How to apply for a Commonbond student loan?
  • What are the pros and cons of Commonbond student loans?

Before moving on to our Commonbond student loans review, we thought you’d like to learn more about getting a student loan. In the video below by The Financial Diet, you will find everything you need to know about student loans. Check it out by clicking the play button.

WHO IS COMMONBOND?

Commonbond was launched in 2013 and is currently headquartered in New York, New York.

Commonbond was built as a private lending company dedicated to providing student loans and refinancing. Although it primarily targeted MBA students when it started, over the years, the company has expanded its products and services including other loan programs for undergraduate, graduate, and medical and dental school.

The company provides loans not only to individuals but also through businesses that want to help employees fund their children’s higher education.

While there are a lot of lending companies out there providing student loans, what makes Commonbond unique is that it is the first financial company that committed to a one-for-one model of business. This means, for every degree fully funded through the company, Commonbond, in return, will fund the education expenses of a needy student in a developing nation.

Furthermore, Commonbond has a partnership with a nonprofit organization called, Pencils of Promise wherein they provide schools, teachers, and technology to thousands of students in Ghana.

It’s probably safe to say that borrowing money from Commonbond, and allowing the company to help you fulfill your degree means being able to help as well to a needy student from somewhere in the world.

It’s like ripples of goodness spreading all throughout the world, one student at a time, right?

WHAT ARE THE STUDENT LOANS OFFERED BY COMMONBOND?

As mentioned, Commonbond does not only offer specialized education student loan options but more.

In particular, Commonbond student loan options are as follows:

  • Undergraduate Student Loans
  • Graduate Student Loans
  • MBA Loans
  • Dental School Loans
  • Medical School Loans

Here’s a quick glance on what you can expect from each of the student loan options, as well as how each varies from one another:

Now, let us talk about each of these loans to have a better understanding —

Undergraduate Student Loans

Of all the student loan options offered by Commonbond, the undergraduate student loans have the most flexible payment plans, as well as loan terms. More so, Commonbond automatically includes the Money Mentor into this account. Money Mentor refers to the financial advisor assigned to every student loan borrower. 

Graduate Student Loans

Similar to undergraduate student loans, graduate student loan borrowers may experience the same kind of flexibility. Borrowers may also opt to receive a free Money Mentor.

MBA Loans

Unlike other MBA loans offered by other lending companies, Commmonbond does not require a co-signer for their MBA loan if you are enrolled in one of the company’s in-network partner schools (there are about 30 of them).

Apart from the loan, Commonbond also offers one-of-a-kind perks to its business school borrowers like summer career development series, an internship program, as well as trips to Ghana.

Dental School Loans

Anyone who is a DMD or DDS student attending any dental school in the country is qualified for dental school loans offered by Commonbond, which comes with a six-month grace period, as well as the option for residency deferment.

Medical School Loans

Wherever you are in the U.S., as long as you are a medical student from one Commonbond’s 59 partner medical schools across the country, you automatically qualify for this type of student loan. Unlike the previous one though, the company does not offer deferment in residency. However, Commonbond lets you pay a monthly payment for as low as $100.

WHAT DO BORROWERS NEED TO KNOW ABOUT COMMONBOND STUDENT LOANS?

Now that you already know who Commonbond is, what it does, and the different student loan options it provides, this time around in our Commonbond student loans review, we are going to share with you the other very important details a borrower must know before sending a student loan application to Commonbond.

In particular, we are going to talk about the following:

  • Loan Amount
  • Interest Rates
  • Loan Terms
  • Loan Fees
  • Loan Discount
  • Rewards
  • Repayment Options
  • Forbearance/Discharge Options
  • Student Loan Refinancing
  • Disbursement of Funds
  • Customer Service

Loan Amount

The first thing that we thought you should know is the amount of money that you can borrow from the company. With Commonbond, student loan borrowers can avail of up to $500,000 lifetime borrowing limit. If you look at the amount, it definitely is enough or more to fund specialized education like dental, medical, as well as an MBA degree.

Interest Rates

The rates vary depending on the type of student loan you will apply for. For your reference, see below table:

Degree Fixed APR Variable APR
Undergraduate 5.45% to 9.74% 1.43% to 7.41%
Graduate 5.40% to 9.74% 1.33% to 7.41%
MBA 5.37% to 7.2% 3.15% to 4.87%
Medical 5.56% to 6.76% 3.46% to 4.64%
Dental 5.33% to 6.98% 3.23% to 4.87%

Furthermore, Commonbond offers refinancing option as well, which charges flexible loan rate options that range from 5.45% – 9.74% (fixed), 1.44% – 7.42% (variable), and 4.25% to 6.10% (hybrid). As with hybrid loans, the rate is fixed for the first half of the term, and then it automatically switches to a variable rate for the last half of the term.

Loan Terms

Borrowers of Commonbond student loans can select from flexible loan terms ranging from five- to 20-year terms depending on the loan type. See below list for your reference:

  • Undergraduate and Graduate Loans: 5, 10, or 15 years
  • MBA Loan: 10 or 15 years
  • Dental and Medical School loans: 10, 15, or 20 years

The lending company, as mentioned, also offers different repayment options to fit the borrower’s budget. It is also important to note that payment starts 30 to 60 days after the disbursement of funds.

Loan Fees

Unlike other lending companies that offer student loan options, Commonbond does not charge application fees or prepayment penalties on any of the loan it offers. However, Commonbond charges a late payment fee, which amounts to 5% of the unpaid amount of the payment due or $10, whichever is less. The company also charges a $5 fee for any returned checks.

Loan Discount

You may be wondering why there is such a thing as a loan discount on our list, but that is because Commonbond offers it. Yes, for real!

All loans made via Commonbond are qualified for a 0.25% interest rate reduction (which is reflected in Commonbond’s advertised rates) when borrowers enroll in auto-draft payments.

Rewards

Apart from discounts, Commonbond also has a rewards program.

The lending company has a referral program wherein you, the borrower can earn $200 every time someone goes through a successful student loan or refinancing application using your referral link.

Repayment Options

One thing we like about Commonbond is that it offers a variety of repayment options. To be exact, Commonbond offers four in-school repayment options that are valid through a loan’s six-month grace period.

Here are the different options:

  • Full – This refers to paying a full monthly payment of a student loan, principal, as well as interest, which starts while you’re in school.
  • Interest-only – This allows borrowers to pay only the interest that accrues. This is available to undergraduate, graduate, as well as MBA students only.
  • Fixed – This option allows borrowers to make low fixed payments every month while the borrower is still in school. Fixed payments amount to $25 per month for both undergraduate and graduate students, and $100 per month for those taking up dental or medical school. Unfortunately, there is no fixed option available for MBA students.
  • Deferred – This refers to the postponement of payments until the end of the borrower’s grace period. Only by the will, all interest will be capitalized.

Forbearance/Discharge Options

Another reason to like about Commonbond student loans is the fact that it does of forbearance and discharge options.

If in case the borrower goes through financial hardship or medical impairment, the borrower can put his or her loan payments on pause for three months at a time for up to 12 months over the life of the loan.

In the event of death or total and permanent disability, a borrower’s loan will be canceled and will not be passed on to anyone else.

Student Loan Refinancing

Commonbond offers refinancing options, too, as we have mentioned earlier. The lending company refinances federal, private, Parent PLUS, as well as previously consolidated loans without charging application, origination, or prepayment fees.

The company offers refinancing of up to $500,000 worth with repayment terms of as short as five years or as long as 20 years.

Similar to regular student loan types offered by the company, its refinancing option also includes a 0.25% discount for enrolling in auto-draft. Refinanced loans are also qualified for up to 24 months of forbearance.

Furthermore, the company’s refinancing services are also open to international students with any major U.S. visa who graduated from a university in the country.

Disbursement of Funds

Once Commonbond confirms your enrollment, the loaned amount will be automatically disbursed directly to your school. Usually, confirmation can take between five days to three weeks.

In case you borrowed more than required for official expenses like tuition, board, and room, your school will be the one to send a refund check.

Customer Service

If you need more information about its products and services, or if you have any questions we were not able to provide an answer on, you may contact Commonbond via phone or live chat from Monday through Friday from 9 am to 8 pm EST.

You may also access them through live chat on their website or email. A response is usually provided within less than 24 hours.

WHO QUALIFIES FOR A COMMONBOND STUDENT LOAN?

Of course, this Commonbond student loans review will not be complete if we will not provide you information regarding who qualifies for a student loan at Commonbond, and who does not.

The lending company provides loans of at least $2,000 up to as much as $500,000 — or up to the cost of attendance as determined by the borrower’s school’s financial aid office. The cost typically includes tuition and fees, room and board, transportation, books, and supplies as well as other personal expenses.

Now, the important question is, who qualifies for a Commonbond student loan?

To qualify for a Commonbond private student loan, you must be able to meet the following requirements:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident card holder
  • Must be currently enrolled at least half-time at a qualified school
  • Must have a minimum credit score of 660

Furthermore, the lending company also looks closely at an applicant’s free cash flow. This means Commonbond looks into how much disposable income you have after you have paid your monthly debt obligations.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A COMMONBOND STUDENT LOAN?

Commonbond’s application process is pretty simple and easy. The company uses an online application, and every approved application is valid for one school year.

When applying for a student loan, make sure to keep the following handy:

  • Your school information
  • Social Security Number
  • The amount of money requested
  • Expected financial aid
  • Your financial information, which includes your income, as well as your rent or mortgage payments

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF COMMONBONS STUDENT LOANS?

We are almost done with our Commonbond student loans review. This review will not be complete, however, we are not going to provide you with the pros and cons of Commonbond student loans.

Here they go —

PROS

  • Minimal Fees and Charges – Apart from late payment charges and check return fees, Commonbonds has no other fees or charges. It does not have an application or origination fee, as well as a prepayment penalty, which means you can pay off the loan any time prior to the maturity of the loan without having to worry about getting charged.
  • Access to Money Mentor – Commonbond offers free mentoring to borrowers. It’s basically a text messaging service that offers borrowers counseling on various topics like getting more money while in school, budgeting, as well as about finding internship opportunities.
  • Simple Co-Signer Release – Unlike other lenders, borrowers only need 24 consecutive months of payments after graduation to be able to apply to drop their co-signers.
  • Forbearance of 24 Months – As compared to other lenders, Commonbond offers forbearance of 24 months, which is definitely way longer than other lenders out there.
  • Online Preapproval – Commonbond offers an online preapproval process that won’t affect your credit score.

CONS

  • Higher Repayment Amounts – Although not all, higher repayment amounts are particularly evident with an in-school, fixed-payment option for dental and medical school students, which amounts to $100 per month.
  • No Medical School Residency Deferment – After their six-month grace period, even as residents, medical students are required to start payment of at least $100 per month.
  • Requires Co-Signer for Undergraduate and Graduate Loans – Commonbond requires a co-signer for student applicants for undergraduate and graduate loans. Otherwise, the loan will not be approved.
  • Loans Not Available in Mississippi and Nevada – While it Commonbond student loans are available to most states, it is not in Mississippi and Nevada.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON COMMONBOND STUDENT LOANS REVIEW

As student loans continue to rise in the country, we’d like to think of it in a positive way. That means a lot of students today are doing their best to finish school – whether it be getting an undergraduate degree, a graduate degree, or a specialized degree.

While there are a lot of options out there, we thought Commonbond student loans do offer one of the best deals – especially when it comes to specialized loans.

So, how do you find Commonbond now after learning all the information we shared?

Well, we do hope that this Commonbond student loans review helped answer some very important questions about the company’s products and services and that it will help you come up with a decision real soon.

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Aspire Student Loans Review: What You Need To Know

Whether you have used Aspire as your loan servicer before or are using this lending company for the first time, this Aspire Student Loans review will provide you all the information you need to come up with an informed decision.

Aspire Student Loans Review

According to Debt.org, America’s Debt Help Organization, the average college tuition cost ranges from $9,410 for an in-state university to $32.410 for private schools. While grants, as well as scholarships, help in aiding school fees, a lot of students, do still need student loans to make it through school.

Still, according to the said organization, the United States does have a total student loan debt of $1.4 trillion as of 2017 (and the number continues to rise), and that the student debt accrued every second amount to $2,858. Meanwhile, the average student debt in the same year was $37,172.

As you can see, a student loan is very popular among American students, and experts do not see it slowing down in the near future. No wonder why there are a lot of lending companies out there providing competitive student loan rates.

Speaking of lending companies, the industry is quite booming right now. As we mentioned, there are so many choices to choose from. One of the options though is Aspire.

Aspire has a complex story particularly on what loans it has serviced and is still servicing. But hopefully, through this Aspire student loans review, we get to detail everything and help you understand fully how Aspire actually works.

With that said, here are the key points that we are going to tackle on:

  • Who is Aspire?
  • What are the student loan services provided by Aspire?
  • What are the repayment options offered by Aspire?
  • How to refinance Aspire student loans?
  • How is Aspire’s student loan forgiveness program?
  • What military benefits does Aspire provide?
  • Who are Aspire’s partners for private loans?
  • What are the pros and cons of Aspire student loans?
  • How to contact Aspire?

WHO IS ASPIRE?

First of all, if you are eyeing for a lending company to borrow money from, make sure to at least know (no matter how little information you have) the institution’s history. This will help you understand why things go this way in this company instead of the other way, and so much more.

Having said that, let go down memory lane and see Aspire’s very interesting history.

Aspire started as a not-for-profit company back in 1979. It was then called the Iowa Student Loan. However, in 2001, the company launched a for-profit subsidiary to specifically handle services outside of its regular business. The subsidiary was called Aspire Resources.

In 2021, Aspire Resources got a contract to service federal student loans. During their stint as a loan servicer for federal students, the company had a remarkable reputation with high customer satisfaction ratings from the Department of Education.

However, in 2015, Aspire’s CEO, Steve McCullough decided to end a contract to service 200,000 federal loans. The decision caused a lot of confusion, controversy, as well as customer complaints.

The decision, though, according to McCullough, was made because the company does no longer has enough accounts to warrant the cost of operations.

Fast-forward to today, while Aspire Resources no longer have the kind of reputation they once had, the company never stopped operating. In fact, today, Aspire still keeps an A-plus rating from the Better Business Bureau in the United States!

Well, this goes to show that while they faced a bump in the business for a while, they managed to play their game the way they know how to. For instance, while they get customer complaints, which is not uncommon anyway, they made sure they get to come up with a solution to address the said complaints. This is the very reason why they kept a high rating still from BBB.

The complex story of Aspire does not end there yet though, because, in 2014, another subsidiary of Iowa Student Loan was formed. They called it the Aspire Servicing Center. This particularly services federal loans from Iowa Student Loan.

Just the same, Aspire also services private student loans from both Iowa Student Loan and its partners.

Having said that, let’s proceed to learn more about the services they offer.

WHAT ARE THE STUDENT LOAN SERVICES PROVIDED BY ASPIRE?

Before we proceed to discuss Aspire students loan services, we thought you might be interested to learn about some tips on student loans, here’s a very informative insight by Debt Free Millenials we thought we should share with you:

So, as promised, Aspire student loans review will provide you with the key details you need to know about Aspire. So, this time around, let’s look through each of the products and services that Aspire provides:

Aspire Federal Student Loans

As mentioned earlier, this particular product or service is handled by Aspire Servicing Center.

Aspire Servicing Center basically services federal student loans leftover from the Iowa Student Loan. These loans though are totally different from the ones that were transferred to the Higher Education Loan Authority of the State of Missouri, or MOHELA when the company gave up servicing federal direct loans.

This particular type of student loan provides several repayment plan options, which include:

  • Standard Repayment Plan
  • Graduated Repayment Plan
  • Extended Repayment Plan
  • Income-Based Repayment (IBR) Plan
  • Income-Sensitive Repayment Plan

Later on, we are going to discuss all these plans in detail.

Meanwhile, federal student loans serviced by Aspire can also qualify for loan forgiveness — either through Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) or other forms of forgiveness available.

However, you must first meet certain requirements for you to be able to enjoy such privileges.

Aspire Private Student Loans

Apart from federal student loans, Aspire Servicing Center also provides support and services for private loan borrowers. The loans come from different sources, which include:

Iowa Student Loan Programs

  • Partnership Advance Education Loan
  • College Family LoanAlliant Credit Union

Credit Union Programs

  • Alliant Credit Union Private Student Loan
  • Ascentra Credit Union Private Student Loan Program

Bank Programs

  • American State Bank Private Student Loan Program

Aspire’s private loan options have different qualifications for eligibility. Thus, it is best to check with Aspire first to check whether you qualify or not for a specific private loan option.

Also, please take note that for credit union programs, you must be a member or become a member of the credit union to avail of the loan. As with the bank programs, “you may need to be a current bank customer or meet other eligibility criteria to apply for loans offered” according to their website.

Again, it’s best to check with Aspire first before kick-starting your application process.

WHAT ARE THE REPAYMENT OPTIONS OFFERED BY ASPIRE?

Earlier, we already mentioned the different repayment options provided by Aspire. This time around, we are going to provide you a more concrete explanation about each repayment program.

As a borrower, it is important to know the available repayment options so you get to decipher if you can actually manage to pay off the loan through the plans they offer. Anyway, here are the different repayment options from Aspire:

  • Standard Repayment Plan – This particular plan is the cheapest plan among the options. Through this, you get to pay off your student loan debt in either 10 years or less.
  • Graduated Repayment Plan – The thing about this plan is that it starts with lower payments, and eventually, it will increase every two years. While this sounds a good idea, we thought this particular plan is ideal for those borrowers who can guarantee an increase in their income relatively early in their careers. If not, this may seem too risky. It may lead to forcing yourself on the side when an increase in the minimum monthly payment surpasses an increase in your income.
  • Extended Repayment Plan – With this plan, you are given 25 years to repay the loan. Although it also sounds like a good idea, paying the loan for such a long time actually means you will pay more in interest. The good thing about this plan though is that you can pay more than the monthly minimum if you want to pay off the loan earlier. This repayment plan is like a standard plan with extra flexibility.
  • Income-Based Repayment (IBR) Plan – For this particular repayment plan, the monthly payment cost is never more than 15% of the borrower’s discretionary income. he lowest earners may be eligible for monthly payments as low as $0 a month. Take note though that is not similar to loan forgiveness as interest will continue to spike up and, and your balance will continue to grow as well. However, any debt outstanding after 25 years of payments is forgiven.
  • Income-Sensitive Repayment Plan – For this repayment plan, payments cost from 4% up to 25% of your gross income. This is quite the same as the IBR plan, but, your payments will not dip lower than the interest accumulated by your loans. So, if your loan for instance accrued $5 in the interest the previous month, the lowest your monthly payment could be is $5.

HOW TO REFINANCE ASPIRE STUDENT LOANS?

Just like most lending companies, Aspire also offers refinancing options for student loans.

Aspire Student Loans can be refinanced by getting another private loan that comes with a lower interest rate.

Acquiring another private loan or personal loan should not be a problem especially if you have a good or excellent credit score, low debt ratio, and if you meet the underwriting criteria set by the lending company.

With so many lending companies out there, you can definitely explore the market and acquire a loan that offers better rates and terms.

Refinancing is actually one of the best options if you want to change your current servicer — especially if you no longer are comfortable with it.

Meanwhile, for federal loans, there are various benefits such as forgiveness, as well as income-based repayment plans that people will have to give up on if they opt to refinance their student loans. If giving up such benefits is a big deal for you at all, then you can have your loans consolidated instead. This helps ensure that the loans stay as they are regardless of the servicer is replaced.

HOW IS ASPIRE’S STUDENT LOAN FORGIVENESS PROGRAM?

At this point in this Aspire student loan review, we are going to talk about the company’s forgiveness program.

There are certain professions that may qualify for Aspire student loan forgiveness programs. If you are a nurse, teacher, or a public service worker, contact Aspire soonest and check if you are eligible to have your loans reduced, or better, forgiven outright.

To give you an idea, here are some of the federal student loan forgiveness programs being offered by Aspire to nurses and teachers:

Nurses

Each program has its own qualifications.

For example, for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program, you need to make 120 qualifying payments on your student loans, at the same time be employed by a government organization or a qualified non-profit organization to be able to take advantage of the program. If you qualify then PSLF automatically forgives the remaining balance on your student loan.

For your reference, below is the list of various forgiveness programs for nurses:

  • NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (PSLF)
  • Federal Perkins Cancellation for Nurses
  • Iowa Registered Nurse and Nurse Educator Loan Forgiveness Program

Teachers

Aspire also has forgiveness programs for teachers. In fact, they do have a few options to choose from — of course, depending on your qualifications.

For the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program (TLF), it forgives up to $17,500 of Direct or FFEL subsidized or unsubsidized loans. To qualify for this program, you must first and foremost teach at a qualifying school for at least 5 years.

For your reference, below are the different forgiveness programs for teachers offered by Aspire:

  • Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant Program
  • Federal Perkins Loan Teacher Program
  • Teach Iowa Scholars Program
  • Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program (TLF)
  • Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)

In addition to the above list of forgiveness programs by the company, your loans may also be forgiven should your school closes before you are even able to complete your studies.

WHAT MILITARY BENEFITS DOES ASPIRE PROVIDE?

Surprisingly, we found that Aspire also provides military benefits — not just one but two. These programs aim to help students who are pursuing military services.

These benefits are:

  • SCRA Interest Rate Limitation – Students who qualify for this program will be charged an interest rate of at most 6% on their student loans.
  • Armed Forces Interest Reduction Program – Students who are on active military duty will get to enjoy a deducted interest rate, which is 0% for up to 24 months. To qualify, students should not have defaulted on their private loan and must be deployed between September 11, 2001, and June 30, 2019.

WHO ARE ASPIRE’S PARTNERS FOR PRIVATE LOANS?

For both private and federal student loans, the Aspire student loan servicing is available. The company offers private student loans through its mother company, Iowa Student Loans. As mentioned earlier, through Iowa Student Loans, you may be eligible for either the Partnership Advance Education Loan or the College Family Loan.

Aspire also works with Alliant Credit Union and Ascentra Credit Union. The partnership helps bring consumer student loans at very competitive rates. However, as we earlier mentioned, you will need to be a member of the credit union to qualify for the loan. By joining or being a member, you get to shop fixed rates for as low as 4.25%.

Aspire also partnered with American State Bank. If you are someone who’s more confident in dealing with banks, then this one’s the best option for you. The rates can go as low as 4.75% (based on April 2020 data), which is lower than the 6.08% that the federal government charges students to borrow for graduate-level studies.

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF ASPIRE STUDENT LOANS REVIEW?

To complete this Aspire student loan review, we are going to share with you some of the pros and cons we found with Aspire. These are as follows:

PROS

  • Co-signer Release – Unlike other lending companies, Aspire allows borrowers to apply for a co-signer release for as long as borrowers meet certain requirements.
  • Interest Rate Reduction – By setting up automatic monthly payments, you can earn a 0.25% interest rate reduction for yourself.
  • Military Discount – As we have shared with you earlier, Aspire does have military benefits. Qualified members of the U.S. armed forces gets to enjoy a reduced interest rate on their student loans.

CONS

  • Requires Membership – Most of Aspire’s partner student loans require borrowers to be members of the credit union. It also requires borrowers opting to loan through their bank partner to be a bank customer to be able to qualify for a student loan.
  • Restrictive Loans – Unfortunately, Aspire’s services are exclusive for Iowa residents attending colleges across the country and for students from other states who are attending colleges in Iowa. If you are nowhere in between, then you better look for another lending company instead.
  • Poor Customer Service – There are a lot of reports of poor customer service, which is not a good thing really.

HOW TO CONTACT ASPIRE?

If you have questions, clarifications, or if you have already decided that Aspire is the one for you to get a student loan from, all you have to do is contact them through the communication channels below:

Customer Service:

(800) 243-7552 or (515) 243-5626

8 a.m.–7 p.m. (Monday–Thursday)

8 a.m.–5 p.m. (Friday)

Private Loan Application Assistance:

(800) 542-6005

8 a.m.–4:30 p.m. (Monday–Friday)

In-Person:

Office Location

6775 Vista Drive

West Des Moines, IA 50266-9305

8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (Monday – Friday)

FINAL THOUGHTS ON ASPIRE STUDENT LOANS REVIEW

While others may find the story of Aspire a little complex, if you look at it, the company is still working the way it should work. Needless to say, it continues to provide student loan options until today.

To sum this Aspire student loans review all up, we just have to say that Aspire does have its share of highs and lows, and it’s all up to you to decide whether you will give Aspire a try or not. At the end of the day, what matters is that you gain confidence with it, and the end goal is, it is able to provide assistance to your needs – which is money to fund your education.

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Citizens Bank Student Loans Review: The Right Lending Company For You

This Citizens Bank student loans review will present to you very important information that will help you decide whether this one’s worthwhile or not. This is ideal for people who, particularly, are eyeing to get a student loan at this bank.

Citizens Bank Citizens One student loans review

In a report published by Forbes online, it says that as of the moment, there are “45 million borrowers who collectively owe nearly $1.6 trillion in student loan debt in the United States.” Because of the increase in number, student loan debt is now ranked as second highest in the consumer debt category — right behind mortgage debt and surpassed both credit cards and car loans.

Furthermore, in the same report, it says that the “average student loan debt for members of the Class of 2018 is $29,200, a 2% increase from the prior year.” The data was from the Institute for College Access and Success.

So, if you are planning to take a student loan, hopefully, this information helps you come up with informed decisions.

RELATED ARTICLES:

One of the most crucial thing though that a student loan borrower has to decide upon is where to get the money from — where to borrow funds.

There are quite a number of financial institutions out there that offer student loans, and one of them is the Citizens Bank.

Having said that, today, we are going to particularly scrutinize the bank through this Citizens Bank Student Loans review.

In particular, we are going to look into the following to help us decipher whether or not the bank’s student loan is worth it:

  • Who is Citizens Bank?
  • What are Citizens Bank student loan options?
  • Who qualifies for a Citizens Bank student loan?
  • How to apply for a Citizens Bank student loan?
  • What are the loan rates, terms, fees, and discounts?
  • What are the repayment options available?
  • What are the pros and cons of a Citizens Bank student loan?

AT A GLANCE: CITIZENS ONE

Before we head on talking about the more definite details of Citizens Bank student loans, here’s a quick view first of what you can expect from getting a student loan at Citizens One:

Lender Allowed Loan Amount APY Range Terms Key Benefit
Citizens Bank $1,000  – 350,000 4.68% – 11.04% fixed; 1.29% – 10.60% variable 5 – 15 years Multi-year approval program

Now, it’s time for a more detailed review. Let’s begin with knowing who Citizens Bank first.

WHO IS CITIZENS BANK AND WHAT IT CITIZENS ONE?

To start off this Citizens Bank student loans review, we are going to share with you first a few information about the bank. As a potential borrower, it is important to know the history of the bank that you are eyeing to deal with. This way, you get an assurance of its credibility and trustworthiness. Both are important especially since we are talking about money here.

Citizens Bank is a traditional bank. It started off in 1828 in Rhode Island.

Citizen Bank has a lending arm, which is Citizens One. The division offers student loans as well as student loan refinancing options to qualified borrowers.

Specifically though, Citizens One offers loans for international students. It also offers a good deal for the bank’s existing customers who may be interested or are eyeing to get a student loan.

The bank’s refinancing loan option meanwhile is ideal for financially stable borrowers who did not graduate or are not citizens of the United States.

Compared to other financial institutions offering student loans, Citizens One definitely has competitive rates. Needless to say, they are very transparent, too.

We particularly like the fact though that the bank’s student loan is open nor just for undergraduates, but for graduates and even parents, too.

To know more about Citizens Bank’s student loan program, check below video by TheRhodeShow:

WHAT ARE CITIZENS ONE STUDENT LOAN OPTIONS?

Now that you already know who Citizens Bank is, and its lending arm, Citizens One, let’s proceed to talk about the real deal – the Citizens Bank student loans review.

Citizens One offers different types of student loans. These are as follows:

  • Undergraduate Student Loans
  • Graduate Student Loans
  • MBA Loans
  • Parent Loans
  • Health Profession Loans
  • Medical Residency Loans
  • Law School Loans
  • Bar Study Loans

Let’s take a look at each of these —

Undergraduate Student Loans

With Citizens One’s Undergraduate Student Loans, students are allowed to borrow for as low as $1,000 up to $150,000 aggregate, or as much as the entire amount of their undergraduate education, whichever between the two is lower. Students are also given the option to defer payments for up to eight years or as long as they are enrolled in an accredited school program.

For this specific type of loan, variable rates vary between 1.54% and 9.65%, while fixed rates are between 4.72% and 12.04%. Meanwhile, loan term options are 5, 10, or 15 years.

Graduate Student Loans

For this particular type of student loan, students who are enrolled at least half-time in a graduate degree program at an accredited school can avail of the loan. Just the same, the least loan amount allowed in $1,000 up to the total cost of attendance in school.

Meanwhile, Graduate Student Loans variable rates vary between 1.47% and 8.81%, and the fixed rates run from 4.40% to 11.35%. Loan terms available are 5, 10, or 15 years as well.

MBA Loans

To qualify for Citizen One’s MBA Loans, a student has to be enrolled at least half-time in a qualifying MBA program. Unlike the previous ones, the allowable loan amount is at least $1,000 up to $225,000 or up to the total cost of attendance, whichever is applicable.

For this type of loan, variable rates range from 1.47% to 8.20%, while fixed rates vary between 4.45% and 10.59%. Loan term options are also 5, 10, or 15 years.

Parent Loans

Citizens One also offers Parents Loans. This means parents can loan money intended for their child’s education. With this kind of loan, parents are given the option to make full payments or interest-only payments while their kid is still in school. Loan amounts also range between $1,000 and the total cost of attendance.

When it comes to interest rates, for variable rates, it’s 3.09% to 6.23%, while fixed rates range from 5.48% up to 8.52%. Available loan term options are only 5 and 10 years.

Health Profession Loans

Another student loan option offered by Citizens Bank – Citizen One is Health Profession Loans. For students who are enrolled at least half-time in a qualifying MD, DMD/DDS, OD, DO, DPM, PharmD, or DVM degree, they are eligible for loan amounts ranging from $1,000 up to $350,000 or up to the total cost of attendance.

Meanwhile, students who are taking cardiac perfusion, chiropractic, cytotechnology, nurse practitioner, occupational therapy, physical therapy, and physician assistant degrees, are eligible for up to $180,000 loan amount.

Variable rates range from 1.47% up to 7.10% for this particular student loan type, while fixed rates vary between 4.40% and 9.49%. You may opt to repay the loan either in 5, 10, or 15 years.

Medical Residency Loans

For medical students who graduated in the last 12 months or are at least in their second year of medical studies may avail Medical Residency Loans. They can borrow at least $1,000 up to $20,000 from the bank. Furthermore, payments can be deferred for up to 48 months during residency or you may opt to make full or interest-only payments.

Variable interest rates range from 3.88% up to 7.08%, while fixed rates are between 6.97% and 10.08%. For this type of student loan, repayments can be done either in 5 or 10 years.

Law School Loans

Law School Loans are also available for students who are enrolled at least half-time in a qualifying law degree program. Qualified students can take out up to an aggregate of $225,000 in financing or up to the cost of attendance, whichever between the two is lower.

For this student loan type, variable rates vary between 1.47% and 8.20%. As for fixed rates, it ranges from 4.45% up to 10.59%. The loan is payable either in 5, 10, or 15 years.

Bar Study Loans

Last, but definitely not the least is Citizens One’s Bar Study Loans. This student loan type is applicable to law students who graduated in the last six months or are enrolled at least half-time at an eligible law school and are within six months of graduation. You may borrow up to a $16,000 loan amount from the bank.

With this loan type, you can opt to defer repayment of the loan while in school or for up to six months after graduation. Repayments can be done through either in 5 or 10 years.

When it comes to interest rates, variable rates range from 4.79% up to 9.86%, while fixed rates vary between 7.39% and 12.82%. Repayment options are either 5 or 10 years.

WHO QUALIFIES FOR A CITIZENS ONE STUDENT LOAN?

Although we have already mentioned some of the important qualifications per type of student loan, Citizens One has laid out eligibility criteria when it comes to who can avail such loans.

So, for your reference, below are the major qualifications for you to be able to avail any of the student loan offered by Citizens One:

  • Must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident card holder
  • Enrolled at least half time in a degree program at an eligible school
  • Have a good credit score or have a qualified co-signer
  • Have attained the age of majority in the state you reside or have a co-signer
  • No prior student loan defaults
  • For international students without a U. S. Social Security number must have a creditworthy U.S. citizen or permanent resident co-signer

Unfortunately, Citizens One did not specify what they mean with “good credit”. However, the bank asks for income information to determine the eligibility of the borrower.

In addition, Citizens One states that the bank’s lowest advertised rates are available only to students with a co-signer.

Good thing though is that Citizens One student loans are available across all states in the country.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A CITIZENS ONE STUDENT LOAN?

So, now you already know what Citizens Bank and Citizens One are all about, as well as the different student loan types they offer. More so, we have already talked about who’s eligible to get the student loans the bank offers.

This time around, in this part of our Citizens Bank student loans review, we are going to share with you the process of application for a student loan at Citizens Bank.

First off, you have to gather all the information as well as documents required by the bank. As mentioned, the requirements vary depending on the specific loan type that you will be applying for. However, some of the most common information that you are going to provide are as follows:

  • Social Security Number
  • Proof of Income
  • Information About Your School
  • Immigration Status Documentation (For International and DACA borrowers)

Second, go to Citizens One website, and complete the online application. Make sure to add a co-signer if deemed necessary.

Third, choose the type of student loan you will be applying for, select the rates, as well as the loan terms.

Lastly, make sure to sign and accept your loan documents once the loan is approved by the bank.

WHAT ARE THE LOAN RATES, TERMS, FEES, AND DISCOUNTS?

A few important things that you need to look into when looking for a financial institution to get a student loan from are the interest rates, fees, or penalties, as well as loan terms.

Loan Rates and Terms

Earlier, we already shared with you the different interest rates as well as the loan terms for each type of student loan that Citizens One offers. Hopefully, you still remember them. If not, please feel free to go back to what we have discussed earlier.

Fees/Penalties

Now, with regards to fees and penalties, if you are planning to apply for a student loan at Citizens One, be aware that once a student loan payment is 15 days past due, it automatically is subject to a fee that is equivalent to 5% of the late payment.

Apart from this, Citizens One does not charge fees like application, origination, disbursement, or prepayment fees on any of the student loans they offer.

Discounts

Meanwhile, Citizen One offers a 0.25% interest rate reduction if the borrower’s or their co-signer has an existing qualifying account with Citizens Bank at the time their application is submitted.

Qualifying accounts include any savings, checking, and money market accounts, as well as credit cards, certificates of deposit, and any loans that are owned by Citizens Bank.

In addition, a 0.25% interest rate reduction is also given if you enroll in auto-pay.

Please note that both discounts are included in the advertised rates of Citizens One.

WHAT ARE THE REPAYMENT OPTIONS AVAILABLE?

Just like most financial institutions offering student loans, Citizens One also provides repayment options. In particular, the lending company offers three in-school payment options, which include:

  • Full Deferent (No In-School Payments Required)
  • Interest-Only Payments
  • Full Payments (Both Interest and Principal)

Unfortunately, parent loans are not eligible for deferment while the student is in school. Meanwhile, a six-month grace period is provided for all private student loan borrowers.

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF A CITIZENS BANK STUDENT LOAN?

At this point in our Citizens Bank student loans review, we are going to share with you the benefits as well as the drawbacks we find with the Citizens One student loan program.

PROS

  • Offers multi-year approval. Usually, student loan lenders require borrowers to fill out a new application every year for financial aid. With Citizens One though, after your freshman year, you may apply for several subsequent years in advance, which is really beneficial. Needless to say, it helps you save a lot of time, and also avoid hard credit inquiries. Citizens, however, conduct soft credit inquiry annually before they release any additional funds to make sure that you continue to meet their qualification.
  • Co-signer release is available. Unlike other banks or financial institutions, Citizens offer co-signer release, which means after 36 consecutive on-time payments, a borrower can apply to free his or her co-signer of his or her obligations.
  • Offers loyalty discount. For the bank’s loyalty discount, they provide a 0.25% interest rate decrease on the loan of customers who are eligible for it.
  • Offers bar study and residency student loans. Not all lending companies provide these kinds of student loan types. That is why it is good knowing that Citizens One gas it. What’s even good about it is that Citizens One offers loans at rates lower than many personal loans out there.
  • Allows international students to apply for a student loan. Not all bank or financial institutions in the country provides student loan program/s to international students. Fortunately, Citizens One does for as long as the borrowers do have a co-signer who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with good credit.

CONS

  • Does not provide a flat in-school repayment option. Unfortunately, unlike many lenders out there, Citizens One does not offer a flat in-school repayment option. This usually applies to borrowers who cannot afford to pay interest-only payments, at the same time, do not want to defer repayment totally — instead of paying a small amount monthly (usually as low as $25 a month).
  • Does not offer a pre-qualification process. For you to find out whether you qualify for a Citizens One student loan or not, you have to submit a full application, which means you will go through hard credit score. So, if you are in doubt, or if your credit score is not that good, you better look for other options instead.
  • Not as techie as other lenders. Unfortunately, we find Citizens One overall website user experience a so-so. It’s old-fashioned, and unlike most lenders who use SMS, email, and chatbots, Citizens only offer via phone or in-person customer service.
  • Only offers student loans for four-year, Title IV-eligible public and private institutions. To put it simply, if you are attending a two-year institution, including community colleges, or a for-profit school, you do not qualify for any student loan program the bank offers.

FINAL THOUGHTS ON CITIZENS BANK STUDENT LOANS REVIEW

It’s nice knowing that Citizens Bank’s Citizens One is providing a number of student loan options – which include undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as allows parents to get a student loan for their kids’ education.

While it has its drawbacks, we have to say that overall, Citizens One student loans are worth a try. The benefits definitely overpower the downsides.

Have you decided yet?

While we have provided you in this Citizens Bank student loans review our personal thoughts about the bank, at the end of the day, you got to check whether or not you qualify for the any of the loans they offer, and if you can manage to pay off whatever loan you choose.

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Navient Student Loans Review: A Borrower’s Guide

This Navient Student Loans review will provide you a number of reasons why you should still consider getting a loan from this company regardless of the controversies it has been involved in recent years.

Navient Student Loans review

Navient is one of the largest federal student loan service provider in the United States. It is known for helping student borrowers go through a long-term process of student loan repayment.

While it has established itself as a student loan giant, as we earlier mentioned, unfortunately, in January of 2017, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) sued Navient. CFPB claims that the company has cut corners to be able to save on operating costs. Furthermore, it says that the lending company did an overall poor job in terms of helping borrowers in paying off their loans.

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Speaking of student loans, in an article published by Forbes, it says that Americans have recorded $1.6 trillion student loan debt in 2020. This amount was collectively owed by 45 million borrowers. Based on this figure, “U.S. Student loan debt is now the second-highest consumer debt category,” says Forbes. It runs behind mortgage debt and higher than credit cards and car loans.

Furthermore, the report says that the “average student loan debt for members of the Class of 2018 is $29,200, a 2% increase from the prior year.” The data came from the Institute for College Access and Success.

You see, student loan debt is such a big deal.

If you are a student loan borrower, rather you are planning to apply for a student loan, it is important to take time to check financial institutions that offer such service, and compare.

One of the financial institutions that offer student loans is Navient.

So, to be able to do this Navient student loans review, and hopefully, help you gauge whether it’s the right lending company for you, here are our guide questions:

  • What is Navient?
  • What are the different types of Navient student loans?
  • What are the repayment options for Navient student loans?
  • Does Navient forgive student loans?
  • Is refinancing possible with the Navient student loan?
  • What are the pros and cons of getting a student loan from Navient?
  • How to contact Navient?

WHAT IS NAVIENT?

Navient is one of the most popular student loan providers in the United States. In fact, it is one of the financial institutions that the Education Department contracts with to manage student loans.

Navient used to be part of Sallie Mae. However, in 2014, the two companies formally split up into two separate businesses. Sally Mae stayed in-charge of handling private student loans, while Navient focused on handling federal student loans.

Headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware, Navient currently serves almost 6.5 million borrowers. At the same time, the company manages a portfolio of about $227 billion federal student loans, which makes the company third-largest of the federal loan servicers.

Apart from providing federal student loans, the company also provides loan servicing for a portfolio of private student loans.

Navient Lawsuits and Complaints

Earlier, we mentioned that company faced one of its greatest hurdles when the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), which is a government agency that oversees the financial industry, filed a suit against the company in January 2017. The CFPB claimed that Navient misallocated student loan payments and that it gave inappropriate advice as well as inaccurate information. Such actions lead to borrowers failing at every state of repayment.

Furthermore, attorneys general in California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Washington also filed legal claims against the lending institution.

The student loan giant, though, called all claims unfounded and promised to “vigorously defend” against them. In June 2018, the company published a fact sheet, which was posted on its website. It says that the suits targeted the company “based on unannounced servicing standards applied retroactively and only against one servicer.” The company also stated that Navient’s borrowers are 37% less likely to default on student loans as compared to other student loan servicers.

Last year, the company started issuing refunds averaging about $770 each to 80,000 veterans who were overcharged for their student loans. Navient will have to process payments of $60 million in total.

In addition, Navient also faces nearly 26,000 formal complaints coming from consumers, which were filed at CFPB. The number is by far the biggest percentage a single student loan servicer got ever.

Some of the complaint made has something to do with receiving bad information, as well as having trouble with how the company handles payments.

WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF NAVIENT STUDENT LOANS?

As part of this Navient student loans review, we are going to look into the different types of student loans that the company offer. This way, you’d your options.

As mentioned earlier, while Navient focuses on providing federal student loans, it also provides private student loans.

FEDERAL STUDENT LOANS

Navient is one of nine student loan servicers that is used by the Education Department to service federal student loans, which include the following:

  • Direct subsidized loans
  • Direct unsubsidized loans
  • Parent PLUS loans
  • Grad PLUS loans
  • Federal Family Education Loan Program (FFELP)

So, if you have federal student loans, you were assigned a student loan provider or services by the U.S. government through the Department of Education once your loan funds were first distributed.

Sadly, borrowers do not have a choice. They cannot choose their loan services, which means, if the Education Department assigns you to Navient, even if you do not like the company, you have no choice but to accept.

PRIVATE STUDENT LOANS

Navient also provides private student loans, and these loans come from a variety of lenders, which include banks, credit unions, and other finance companies.

Navient’s private student loans have different repayment plans available. Choosing a repayment plan is usually at the lender’s discretion.

WHAT ARE THE REPAYMENT OPTIONS FOR NAVIENT STUDENT LOANS?

One thing to particularly like about Navient is that it gives you access to all types of federal repayment programs. More so, it also offers repayment programs to those under private student loans.

With regard to federal student loans, keep in mind that upon receipt of the loan, it will be automatically set up with the standard plant by default.

Meanwhile, if you are into learning how to lower your student loan debt with Navient, check this very informative video by Gamez Law Firm to know more:

Moving on, here are the different repayment plans Navient provides:

FEDERAL STUDENT LOANS: TRADITIONAL REPAYMENT PLANS

Navient offers three traditional repayment plans for federal loan borrowers. These are:

  • Standard Repayment Plan – This particular plan lasts up to ten years. It comes with a fixed payment (at least $50), and your monthly payment will be based on the total amount of your loan.
  • Graduated Repayment Plan – This plan starts with lower monthly loan payments. It will then gradually increase over the course of the loan. Typically, repayment terms are set at ten years as well. Meanwhile, monthly loan payments increase every two years.
  • Extended Repayment Plan – This plan is similar to that of the Graduated plan. However, it has 25-year terms. While it sounds good, borrowers will actually end up paying a lot when choosing this option because of the interest.

FEDERAL STUDENT LOANS: INCOME-DRIVEN REPAYMENT (IDR) PLANS

Navient also offers IDR plans, and federal student loan borrowers may opt any of the following:

  • Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE) – With this plan, the monthly payment is 10% of your discretionary income. Once you have made payments for 20 or 25 years for graduated loans, whatever outstanding balance you have is forgiven.
  • Pay As You Earn (PAYE) – This plan is quite similar to REPAYE except that you are not going to pay more under this plan than you would under the standard plan ever.
  • Income-Based Repayment (IBR) – This plan lets you make payments of 10% or 15% of your discretionary income. After 20 years of making payments, your loan will be forgiven.
  • Income-Contingent Repayment (ICR) – With this plan, how much you pay for the loan will be determined by your income. Just the same, your loans are forgiven after 20 years.

PRIVATE STUDENT LOANS REPAYMENT PLANS

When it comes to the repayment of Navient’s private student loans, they are mainly dependent on the terms and conditions set by private lenders.

Some of the repayment options the company provides for private student loans are:

  • In-School Interest-Only – With this plan, borrowers will only pay monthly interest payments while they are still in school, as well as during their grace period.
  • In-School Fixed – For this repayment plant, borrowers pay a $25 monthly payment while in school, as well as during grace period. Interest may capitalize on this plan.
  • Deferred – This is applicable to borrowers who would choose not to make payments while in school. Usually, no monthly payments are required up to six months after graduation. The same goes if you drop below half-time as a student. Interest will also capitalize on this plan.

DOES NAVIENT FORGIVE STUDENT LOANS?

Now that you already know the company’s repayment options, this time around, let’s talk about student loan forgiveness.

Does Navient forgive student loans?

The answer to that is a resounding YES, they do. In fact, we mentioned some of them already earlier. But for you to fully understand the rules when it comes to student loan forgiveness at Navient, read on.

For those who have federal student loans serviced by the company, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness through different government programs such as:

PUBLIC SERVICE LOAN FORGIVENESS (PSLF)

It takes ten years to qualify for a Public Service Loan Forgiveness or PSLF. Once you are done paying off the loan for 10 years, you may already apply for this program.

To qualify, borrowers must make 120 qualifying monthly payments while working full-time for a qualified employer. If requirements are met and the application is approved, the remainder of the student loan will be forgiven tax-free.

Furthermore, borrowers need to make on-time payments that are paid in full. They also need to move their loans to one of the found IDR plans, which we already discussed earlier.

For employers to qualify, they must be part of any of the following:

  • Government organizations
  • 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations
  • Other qualified non-profit organizations
  • Full-time AmeriCorps or Peace Corps volunteers

With PSLF, your designation at work is immaterial. What only matters is that your employer qualifies.

Please take note that only payments made while working for a qualified employer counts. Payments, however, do not have to be made consecutively. Also, it may come from more than one qualified employer.

INCOME-DRIVEN REPAYMENT LOAN FORGIVENESS

Earlier, we discussed the different plans under IDR. Just to refresh your memory, with IDR, you need to make payments between 20 and 25 years, depending on the plan you are in, and then, any outstanding balance after those years will be forgiven already.

Unlike PSLF though, with IDR you will have to pay taxes. They are considered taxable income by the IRS as payments were made for a longer period of time.

OTHER OPTIONS

Not a lot of Navient borrowers know that there are actually other options for their loans to be forgiven. Most of these options though are specialized according to where you reside, your career choice, as well as other factors.

Some of the loan forgiveness options offered by Navient are:

  • Teacher Student Loan Forgiveness
  • Indian Health Service (IHS) Loan Repayment Program (LRP)
  • Nurse Corps Loan Repayment Program
  • State-Run Forgiveness Programs

Keep in mind though that qualifications vary for each. If you want to know more, better check directly with Navient.

IS REFINANCING POSSIBLE WITH NAVIENT STUDENT LOAN?

Another thing that we will look into as part of our Navient Student Loans review is if the company allows refinancing for the student loan.

Luckily, the answer to that is a YES as well.

In fact, Navient offers plenty of refinancing options.

If you are interested in refinancing your student loan with Navient, all you have to do is visit NaviRefi.com.

The downside though is that these loans are kind of exclusive as you have to be an existing member of Navient and that you must receive an invitation to refinance your loans to be able to avail the refinancing option.

To refinance your student loan, the minimum amount required is $5,001. So, if your anywhere below that, then that automatically disqualifies you.

With Navient, rates can be as low as 4.65%. However, keep in mind that rates offered to vary depending on your income as well as your credit score. How much you are trying to refinance and the term length will also be taken into consideration.

Another thing to keep in mind is that Navient prefers to refinance college graduates. Although refinancing options are still available for those who did not graduate, the chances of approval though may be significantly low.

WHAT ARE THE PROS AND CONS OF GETTING A STUDENT LOAN FROM NAVIENT?

So, our Navient student loans review will not be complete without us sharing with you the pros and cons of getting a loan with Navient.

Here they are —

PROS

  • Navient offers a variety of repayment options. As you can see from above, they have a lot of repayment options to choose from depending on your preference as well as your qualifications.
  • The company offers the opportunity to refinance your loan.
  • The company provides borrowers the opportunity to customize their monthly payments within specific parameters, set up an automatic payment from your bank, and many more.
  • Federal student loan borrowers have the access to standard lineup of federal loan benefits, which include standard, graduated, and extended repayment plans; income-driven repayment plans; forbearance and deferment; and the potential for student loan forgiveness.
  • Navient offers hardship options for private student loans such as term and rate modification, a rate reduction program, interest-only, as well as extended student loan repayment plans provided you are eligible.

CONS

While working with or getting a student loan from Navient has a lot of benefits, it surely has downsides as well. These are:

  • Navient faced its share of controversy over recent years.
  • The company also faces the most number of complaints about a single lending company based on Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) data.
  • Attorneys general of California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Washington also filed legal claims against the Navient.

HOW TO CONTACT NAVIENT?

Navient can be reached by using different platforms depending on the type of loans you have. For assistance, questions, and inquiries, you can contact Navient via phone, email, fax, mailing address, and through their website.

For your reference, here’s the company’s contact information:

Navient customer service phone numbers:

Phone: 800-722-1300

TDD: 877-713-3833

International: 800-722-1300 or 317-806-0580

Fax: 866-266-0178

International Fax: 001-570-706-8563

For mail payments:

Navient – U.S. Department of Education Loan Servicing

P.O. Box 4450

Portland, OR 97208-4450

For general correspondence:

Navient – U.S. Department of Education Loan Servicing

P.O. Box 9635

Wilkes-Barre, PA 18773-9635

The cosigner can mail payments to:

Navient

P.O. Box 9988

Wilkes-Barre, PA 18773-9988

For general correspondence and submitting documents:

Navient

P.O. Box 9640

Wilkes-Barre, PA 18773-9640

FINAL THOUGHTS ON NAVIENT STUDENT LOANS REVIEW

Navient is a student loan giant. Needless to say, it is one of nine financial institutions that the Education Department contracts with to manage student loans.

With years of being in the student loan business, there surely is no doubt it’s a strong company.

However, just like any other strong companies out there, hurdles do come as well. Unfortunately, in recent years, the company do still has pending lawsuits and several borrower complaints to face, and get through.

Setting the controversies aside, focusing on what the company offers, we have to say that Navient is worth it. 

But then again, it is all up to you. Are you willing to give it a try? Do you think the company can bounce back after all these controversies?

Hopefully, this Navient student loans review was able to provide you with all the information you need about the company, and that it helped you decide whether or not Navient is worth a try or not.