Best rates consolidating student loans

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At first glance, private student loans might appear to have lower interest rates than federal student loans – but those lowest advertised rates are only for loan applicants who have excellent credit scores.

The average college student won’t qualify for these rates or will be forced to sign with a cosigner.

We spent 40 hours researching student loans, contacting lenders and learning about rates and repayment options. It has flexible loan terms, high limits and good rate reduction bonuses if you have a Citizen’s Bank account. It has a longer forbearance period, but offers more repayment lengths and higher loan limits.

Lend Key has the shortest cosigner release period and longer forbearance than other lenders.

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For this reason, private student loans can have very high interest rates.

Late payments affect your credit as well as the primary borrower’s.

If you choose to cosign a loan, stay in touch with the primary borrower to make sure you handle any issues before they begin to miss payments.

Federal loans can also be subsidized, meaning that the government pays the interest on the loan while you’re in school and up through the first six months after you graduate.

To find out which federal loans you qualify for, fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) online.

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