Consolidating student loans is a smart move. It’s crucial to understand what you are getting into before you do. Before you sign on the dotted lines, it is important to do your research. Although consolidating student loans can be simple, there are many rules and regulations that must be understood before you make the decision to combine your student loans into one loan. Here are some important rules and regulations regarding student loan consolidation. Before you apply for a consolidation loan, make sure that you fully understand them.
Free Student Loan Consolidation
A consolidation loan for student loans is free. You don’t have to pay any fees. It’s most likely a scam if the lender charges an upfront fee to consolidate student loans. This is commonly known as an “advance loan scam” and it’s quite common in student loan consolidation.
While in School, You Can’t Consolidate
Consolidating student loans can only be done after the grace period has ended, which is six month after you graduate or drop out of school. Consolidating student loans can be done once the loan repayments begin. However, it is a good idea to consolidate before this point. While it may not be for everyone, it is worth looking at the numbers to determine if consolidating would help you save money and make it easier to manage your loans.
Consolidating Student Loans under Your Name
Although this rule may seem obvious, it could be applicable in certain cases, such as when the student is married and/or has the parents’ names on any student loans. Parents and students can consolidate student loans but they cannot do so together. The same applies to married students with student loan debt. Married students can’t consolidate student loan debts into one consolidation loan, but they can each have their own consolidation loans.
Students and Grads may consolidate with any lender
There are no restrictions on which lenders can consolidate student loans. You are free to choose any lender you like. This allows you to compare rates and get the best incentives. Remember that lenders will require you to maintain a minimum balance of $7,500.
Consolidation All Federal Student Loans are Eligible
Consolidating federal student loans can be done for any type, even single student loans. However, consolidation loans can only be combined once. You must include a student loan in your consolidation loan in order to consolidate it. Your interest rate would then be recalculated using a formula that combines the old interest rate and the new rate due to the student loan. Note that the interest rate for a student loan consolidation loan is calculated using a weighted average from all student loans. Reconsolidating later will not reset your interest rate.
Consolidation loans offer longer repayment terms
Federal student loans feature standard 10-year repayment plans. These terms can be extended to 12-30 year depending on how much student loan debt you have. It’s not a good idea to extend the terms of a loan. Interest charges will increase the longer the loan is in existence. It is recommended that you pay off your loan as soon as you can. However, people can extend the repayment period for consolidation loans to make it more affordable.
There are no prepayment penalties
Your student loan consolidation can be paid off at any time without prepayment penalties. To avoid interest charges and relieve you from financial stress, I recommend that you pay off your consolidation loan as soon possible. Make sure you tell the lender when you make additional monthly payments that it should be for the principal of the loan and not future payments.