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Private Student Loans

Private Student Loans can be used to Make up the Difference between total cost of school and any financial aid that the student may receive. You can borrow up to $30,000 or more for tuition, books, housing, computer and other related education expenses.
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Private Student Loans:

Summary Overview

summary information
  • private student loan amounts:
    eligible to borrow from $1,500 to $30,000 annually (or up to $40,000 annually for certain schools): 1

  • uses:
    designed to pay for education-related expenses, including your personal PC and past tuition bills

  • fast loan processing:
    conditional approval in as little as 15 minutes; funding can be made in as little as 5 business days from receipt of your completed application.

  • repayment:
    begins after graduation or separation from school: 2

  • eligibility:
    must be of legal age attending at least half-time in a degree, graduate or certificate program 3

  • rate reduction incentives:
    reduce your rate by up to 0.50% during your repayment period: 4

  • no federal restrictions:
    loan amounts are not tied to any federal or college limits — you can borrow as much as you need up to the approved loan limit.

  • approval requirements:
    satisfactory credit history and sufficient income required for approval — many first-time students may need a qualified co-signer such as a parent or another in order to qualify for the loan.

  • co-signer release benefit:
    students can apply to release co-signers from the loan after student meets certain criteria: 5

  • rates:
    competitive interest rate loans: 4

  • best way to apply:

    1 start their application online
    fill in all the information
    related to your funding needs and save your application

    get your parent or another co-signer to retrieve the saved application. Parent or co-signer completes their section and submits


    upon approval, funds will be sent to the student - student and co-signer establish a budget plan to make sure aid borrowed meets education costs.

    see our private student loan module for more information

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Private Student Loans:

Advantages and Disadvantages

  • Fills the Gap
    since the cost of college can be higher than most financial aid awards, private student loans are used to fill the gap between cost of education and financial aid received

  • Quick Processing
    unlike federal loans that are processed through the college, the processing and distribution of funds is through the student thus speeding up process time

  • Availability of Funds
    private student loans can be used for more education-related expenses such as personal computers and other related supplies

  • No Federal Filing
    you do not have to file forms with the federal government in order to apply for private student loans. Private student loans are perfect for students who need additional funds to close a gap or pay for additional study

    see our private student loan module for more information
  • Credit Check Required
    you must have a credit history and verifiable income in order to qualify for this loan; since many students do not meet these qualifying parameters, a co-applicant may be required on the application

  • Higher Interest Rates
    private student loans have a higher interest rate than federal student loans: see product terms and rates

  • Multiple Borrowings
    you have to file and apply for a loan each academic year.
apply online

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Private Student Loans:

Understanding the True Costs

Understanding the Costs of Using Private Student Loans to Finance College

College aid programs, including scholarships and federal Stafford loans may cover a portion of the costs, but they cannot cover them all. Therefore, many students are now turning to private student loans to make up the difference.

There are plenty of lenders out there who are more than happy to lend you the money. Incentives and ad displays promising you all the money you need without having to pay anything until after graduation is one way that lenders lure borrowers.

This sounds enticing, but are you certain that you understand the long-term costs with that decision?


Let’s run through an example:

Say that you borrow $12,000 for the year that includes your origination fee. You use the money to pay any expenses not covered by your financial aid package.  Likewise, you choose to defer repayments until 180 days after graduation.


The interest rate on private student loans is variable

meaning it can go up or down each month while you are in school and when you are in repayment.

For this illustration, let’s say the rate stays constant at 9% for the next 48 months (the 4 years that you are in school):

  • Loan amount borrowed: $12,000
  • Annual interest rate: 9.0%
  • Deferment period: 48 months


By the time you graduate, the total amount of your loan will be approximately $17,177

which includes the original loan amount and the interest charges accumulated during the deferment period.

Now, let’s assume that you borrow the same amount to pay tuition, housing, books, etc., again in your 2nd, 3rd, and 4th years in school:

  • Sophomore Year: $12,000 borrowed
  • Junior Year: $12,000 borrowed
  • Senior Year: $12,000 borrowed


You have now graduated from college. You will have 180 days after graduation before you make the first payment.

The repayment terms will be as follows assuming the interest rate was constant:

  • Loan Amount: $63,131 (this is the approximate amount of money borrowed that includes the amount of interest charges to the current loan amount during your deferment period).
  • Interest Rate: 9% (this is a variable rate that can change monthly. For this purpose, we will keep the interest rate constant).
  • Term: 240 months (you will have 20 years to repay the loan).
  • Monthly Payment: approximately $568.00


That is a pretty big monthly amount to make each month.

But it may be okay for you considering the type of job you are able to get with your college degree, which can pay a lot more money per year than jobs not requiring a degree.

Consider student lending as an investment into a great career; however, you need to understand the cost-benefits analysis for using private student loans to finance your college.


Now let's consider the costs if you were to borrow the full amount to pay the total cost of education

If the cost of education was $30,000 and you borrowed that full amount each year with deferred payments, your repayment structure would look like this:

  • Total amount borrowed including interest rate charges during deferment: $157,827
  • Your monthly repayment during 240 months with interest rate being constant: $1,420.00


If your cost of education was $40,000 and you borrowed the full amount each year with deferred payments

your repayment structure would like this:

  • Total amount borrowed including interest rate charges during deferment: $210,437.00.  
  • Monthly repayments for 240 months with interest rate being constant: $1,893.35


So be careful on the total amount that you will borrow.

Only borrow the amount you need to cover the cost of education minus other college financial aid that you may receive. 

Also use our budgeting worksheet to plan your education costs as it can be a useful tool to help you keep higher education costs down.

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SayStudent Private Student Loan


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SayStudent Stafford Student Loans


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Student Loan Application


Disbursement Period:
07/01/06 to present
Stafford Student
(fixed rate)
PLUS Loans
(fixed rate)
Private Student
(variable rate)
see rates
Other Disbursements:
see rate chart
Private Student Loans