Every year, millions of college students depend on loans to pay for tuition, books, lab time, room, board, transportation, and more. Although many types of loans are offered to both undergraduate and graduate students, there are some differences. In addition, the amount of funding available, as well as interest and fees could vary. Of course, any education expert would tell you that prior to applying for any type of student loan it would be worth the time and effort to seek out scholarships, as well as government grants. However, if you are getting ready to start college or continuing your education and you find additional financial assistance is needed, a student loan may be the best or only alternative. Here are a few of the different options for student loans .
We wanted to take this opportunity to provide information about student loans on an undergraduate versus graduate level so you can see some of the differences between the two. With this information, making the best choice for your situation would be much easier.
Undergraduate Student Loans
You will discover numerous options to consider when it comes to student loans as an undergraduate. However, the following are a few examples of those deemed most popular and beneficial.
• Smart Option Student Loan – Offered by Nellie Mae, the Smart Option Student Loan has been carefully developed with two repayment options, both designed to lower the amount of debt and ultimately, save you money. With this type of undergraduate student loan, you can choose a fixed option, meaning interest would not change. For this, you can set up payments as low as $25. The second repayment option is a low interest plan, also set up to reduce the amount of debt. With the fixed option, you would save more than 20% throughout the life of the loan whereas with the second interest option, savings would reach over 30%.
• PNC Solution Loan – The second undergraduate student loan we wanted to mention is a great solution after being turned down for other federal loans. With this, a few benefits include there being no application or origination fee, setup of automatic payments, available money for all college expenses, and in some cases, deductible tax.
Graduate Student Loans
As a graduate student, options for loans actually increase. As with financial aid solutions for undergraduate students, we have provided a few examples of loan options specific to graduate students.
• Grad Stafford – This student loan is liberal, offering as much as $20,500 each year in financial assistance although the actual amount would be dependent on the FAFSA. For this, you would not need a cosigner and you have as long as 25 years for repayment. With the Grad Stafford student loan, checks would be sent to the school with funds distributed for you according to need. Interest on this loan is set at 6.8%, making it an appealing solution.
• Grad Private – For this student loan, the cost would be much less than with other loan options. Rather than the amount of funding being based on the FAFSA, the applicant would be offered a certain number based on his or her credit score. As far as a cosigner, there would be times when one was needed but other times when no cosigner would be required. As far as interest, this is based on credit score. Obviously, the better the score the lower the rate offered. The length of repayment is still good at 20 years.
• Grad PLUS – The last graduate student loan we wanted to mention requires no cosigner, approval is based on credit score although an FAFSA is typically needed as well, and interest is fixed at 7.9%. Although the rate is a little higher than some of the other student loans for graduates, having 25 years to repay the debt makes it a good consideration when needing funding for college.