When you think of private student loans, you probably think of big-name lenders that have been around for a long time, like Sallie Mae, Sun Trust, and Citizens Bank. There are some new names in town, though, and among them is College Ave Student Loans. This 21st century lender is based online, and they pride themselves on solely dealing with student loans.
Because they focus on academic loans and no others, you know that College Ave Student Loans will stay up to date on all of the latest trends and changes in the world of student lending. All loan applications are submitted and processed online, and you can choose to apply for a loan with or without a cosigner.
Why Choose a Private Lender Over Federal Student Loans
Of course, College Ave is a private lender, and we all know that federal student loans traditionally provide a lot more protection for students should they fall on financial hardship, not to mention that very attractive six-month grace period between leaving school and beginning your monthly loan repayments. So why should you consider a private lender over federal student loans?
First of all, you should absolutely fill out a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) and find out how much aid you are eligible for through the federal government before you approach any private lender. For one thing, you could find that you’re eligible for grant money that never needs to be paid back or that you qualify to receive subsidized Stafford loans that don’t collect interest until after you graduate.
Second, you should find out what you can expect if you take out a PLUS loan for graduate school (or if your parents choose a PLUS loan to cover your undergraduate years). These loans are all set at fixed rates, which won’t change throughout the time you’re paying them. However, where those interest rates are set does vary from year to year.
For example, PLUS loans are capped at 10.5%. In 2013, rates were set at 6.41%, but last year they rose to 7.21%. College Ave Student Loans’ interest rates range from 2.06% to 10.2%, depending on your credit history and the market.
You won’t ever see dramatic changes in interest rates from month to month. Rather, you’ll see interest rates adjusted to fit the market once per year. While this is a bit of a gamble, it also doesn’t lock you into a rate that remains high for as long as you’re paying on the loan, simply because you started school in a year when interest rates were inflated.
Furthermore, if you can find someone with a great credit history to cosign with you, you will benefit from a discount on your interest rate. And, if you make your required payments with their automatic debit services, College Ave will deduct 0.25% from your interest, as well.
Find Out if You Qualify for College Ave Student Loans Immediately
In addition to providing online applications – that you can complete on your computer, phone, tablet, or other mobile device – College Ave also gives you immediate feedback on your loan. Instead of waiting to find out if you qualify or not, their credit decision is instant. You’ll have the information you need to decide between federal and private student loans without all the waiting.
What About Repayment Options and Deferrals?
This is another place where federal student loans have long had the upper hand over private loans. Private lenders have a terrible reputation for being incredibly strict with their repayment structures and completely inflexible when it comes to financial hardship.
Thousands of students choose federal loans over private loans every year because they are afraid of what might happen if they lose their job or find themselves unable to make their monthly payments for any reason. The federal government is known for allowing loan deferrals during times of hardship, while private lenders are known for being real scrooges about any variance in payments.
Well, a new day may be dawning for private student loans. Not only do you have the chance to get lower interest rates, but now you have more freedom with repayment plans and deferrals, too. College Ave student loans proudly offer multiple repayment plans to fit your budget, along with deferrals for students continuing their educations or who’ve had recent financial hardship.
The future of student loans lies in instant feedback, low interest rates, and flexible repayment plans. While these have all been the territory of federal loans for a long time, the tides are turning. We expect to see more and more private lenders surface that work solely with student loans and continue to change the way we borrow money for school. College Ave has become a successful lending company in relatively little time with this model, and we would be surprised if others didn’t follow suit.
Compare and Apply for Student Loans TuitionChart.com
TuitionChart.com works hand-in-hand with the best, most trusted names in private student lending to help students and their families find the money they need for college. Through use of comparison tools and loan searches, TuitionChart provides over 20 different loan options for students. TuitionChart.com is designed to help students and their families wend their way through the maze of financial aid information.