About Student Loans
Student loans are a type of financial aid offered by financial institutions and the federal government to students who want to attend a post-secondary educational institution. The government issues federal student loans through the Department of Education, while private lenders, such as banks, issue private student loans. Federal loans generally have lower interest rates and lower borrowing limits than private student loans, and should be used before you consider private student loans as a way of paying for college. Student loans can be used to help pay for tuition, study materials, and living expenses.
About Fixed Student Loans
A fixed student loan is, simply, a loan with a fixed interest rate. In the current financial climate there are advantages to having fixed student loans: since the APR (Annual Percentage Rate on interest) offered by most banks will change over time, a fixed APR provides confidence to the borrower in knowing what payments will be and the total amount to be repaid. Variable APRs could cause unwanted financial worries for students who are nearing the beginning of their repayment period, as interest rates may increase and their monthly payments could be higher than originally projected. Fixed student loans provide more financial stability, as payments will remain unchanged as a result of the fixed interest rate. As a result, you can budget your money more wisely.
Types of Fixed Student Loans
Most fixed student loans are federal loans, including Stafford Loans, PLUS Loans, and Perkins Loans. Private lenders may also offer private student loans that have a fixed APR, so you should ask your lender if these are available.
Applying for Fixed Student Loans
You can apply for federal fixed student loans by filling out and submitting a FAFSA to your school. The school will determine which federal loans you are eligible for, and these will appear in your financial aid package. If you apply for fixed student loans from a private lender, then you should be aware that you will need a good credit score or have a cosigner with a good credit score to get approval for fixed student loans.
Q:What are the benefits of fixed rate student loans?
A:Fixed rate student loans have a number of benefits over adjustable interest rate loans. A variable interest rate can result in the total cost of the loan skyrocketing unexpectedly, and since a student does not have a regular income, such a change could be disastrous and eat through one's savings. Fixed rate student loans have locked interest rates, which means no real surprises on that front; additionally, they are easy to understand and do not require complicated mathematical calculations to be made each month before repayment.
Q:Are there any drawbacks to fixed rate private student loans?
A:Fixed rate private student loans are good for students who want to protect themselves from an unexpected rise in interest rates, as students can also budget their expenses with more probability. However, one drawback to these loans is that the fixed interest rate might be higher than the interest rate on other variable loans, meaning students will have to pay a higher amount, especially if the market interest falls.
Q:What are the best options for low, fixed interest rate college loans for students?
A:The most common type of fixed-rate student loans are the federal loans, such as Stafford Loans, PLUS Loans, and Perkins Loans. However, private lenders have also started offering private student loans on a fixed APR, so research your options before making a decision and also make sure you have thoroughly checked out the terms and conditions of each lender.