What are the Graduate Student Loans?
Graduate school student loans are financial aid provided by the banks, financial institutions, and the federal government to help graduate students with their monetary problems. There are federal as well as private graduate student loan programs. These loans pay for your tuition, study materials, and living expenses.
What are the common features?
Most of the federal graduate student loans have a consolidation option where you can combine all of your existing student loans into one. This helps you in getting a lower Annual Percentage Rate (APR), a single convenient payment, and a much longer repayment time. This does offer more repayment time but you end up paying much more by the end of the program.
On the contrary, graduate private student loans have minimal APR and often end in 5 to 15 years, making you pay less towards the interest. Banks such as Sallie Mae and SunTrust offer deferment options where you can halt your repayments for a specific period of time provided you have a valid reason. You may not need to repay the loan while you are in school, but there is a option.
What is the graduate student loans policy?
The requirements for getting a student loan do vary. You have to be a U.S. citizen, with a valid SSN, to qualify for a loan. There are programs for those who are not from the U.S., but they must provide an American cosigner with a good FICO credit score. Having a cosigner also reduces the APR and has more relaxed terms and conditions. If you have a bad credit score you may still, in rare cases, be eligible for a graduate student loans program, however, the terms and conditions will be much more stringent. A cosigner with a good credit history will help in loan approval.
Since the graduation degree programs are usually tough on the finances, getting graduate student loans provides you some breathing space and a lifeline to your future endeavors. It’s a great way to earn a degree while keeping your funds well in shape.
Graduate school loans are offered by the federal government and private lenders. Students interested in obtaining graduate school loans should look into federal loan options first, since these offer the lowest interest rates and most flexible borrowing terms. However, if federal aid does not provide enough financial assistance, you can apply for a private student loan. Private graduate school loans require the applicant to have a positive credit history, as well as a cosigner with a strong credit score.
What are the eligibility criteria to get student loans for graduate school?
There are a few specific requirements to get student loans for graduate school. Most importantly, the applicant needs to be a legal U.S. citizen, hold a social security number, must not have defaulted on any previous loan, be enrolled in an accredited graduate school, and must have completed an undergraduate degree program from an accredited institute.
How can I apply for student loans for graduate programs?
To apply for student loans for graduate degree programs you must first submit a FAFSA application. This form collects all kind of financial information about students such as tax payments, family support, employment, income, etc. Through the information provided in this form, the government will determine if you need financial assistance, and how much. You may submit this form online at fafsa.ed.gov.
What is the expected interest rate on graduate school student loans?
GradPLUS loans are student loans funded by the federal government and are designed to financially assist students in graduate degree programs. GradPLUS loans have a fixed interest rate of 7.21% for the 2014-15 academic year. One of the major advantages of GradPLUS loans is that they have simple eligibility requirements and flexible repayment options.
What are the eligibility requirements for private graduate student loans?
The eligibility requirements for private graduate student loans depend on the lender. Both U.S. and international students can apply for private student loans. Applicants might be required to include a cosigner, as the main purpose of a cosigner is to help the applicant qualify for the loan. The rest of the eligibility requirements may vary. Notably, students should exhaust their federal financial aid options before applying for private loans.
Types of Student Loans
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- Without Cosigner