Home Ask Student Aid FAQ

Student Aid FAQ

What are the benefits of federal student loan consolidation?
Federal consolidation loans allow borrowers to combine several federal student loans into one loan to streamline loan repayment. The monthly payment amount may decrease because repayment can be spread over a longer time period. Because there are no penalties for prepaying the loan in full or in part, borrowers may make larger monthly payments or extra payments if they wish. Borrowers may also change repayment plans at least once a year.

Read Entire Answer
Do I have to repay a Federal Student Loan?
By signing the Master Promissory Note (MPN) for a Direct Loan, the borrower promises to repay the loan. The Master Promissory Note is a legally binding agreement. It specifies the terms of the loan.

Read Entire Answer
What are the penalties for early student loan payment?
There are no prepayment penalties on federal student loans or private student loans. You can make extra payments on your student loans or pay them off in-full without paying a fee or other penalty.

Read Entire Answer
Does a private consolidation loan save the borrower money?
It depends. A private consolidation loan may reduce the monthly payment by increasing the term of the loan. But, while this may make the monthly payment more affordable, it does not save the borrower money. Increasing the term of the loan often leads to more interest being charged over the life of the loan.

Read Entire Answer
How can I lower my student loan payments?
Student loan payments can be a source of financial stress for many borrowers who are struggling to repay their loans. Every dollar of loan payments is a dollar less that is available for other priorities. So, borrowers sometimes seek to lower their monthly student loan payments.

Read Entire Answer
How long is the repayment term for private consolidation loans?
The length of the repayment term varies by lender, typically 15, 20 or 25 years. Lenders offering fixed interest rates may have shorter repayment terms. The repayment term may depend on the amount borrowed.

Read Entire Answer
How much can I borrow in Direct Loans if I'm an undergraduate?
These limits cover the 2015-2016 academic year for Direct Loans (Direct Subsidized and Direct Unsubsidized Loans). Dependent undergraduate students can borrow: Year 1 – $5,500 (up to $3,500 subsidized); Year 2 – $6,500 (up to $4,500 subsidized); Year 3+ – $7,500 (up to $5,500 subsidized); Aggregate/Cumulative – $31,000 (up to $23,000 subsidized). Independent undergraduate students can borrow: Year 1 – $9,500 (up to $3,500 subsidized); Year 2 – $10,500 (up to $4,500 subsidized); Year 3+ – $12,500 (up to $5,500 subsidized); Aggregate/Cumulative (up to $23,000 subsidized) – $57,500.

Read Entire Answer
Are there subsidized loans for graduate students?
The subsidized Federal Stafford Loan is no longer available to graduate and professional school students. As of July 1, 2012, graduate students and professional school students are eligible only for the unsubsidized Federal Stafford loan. Undergraduate students remain eligible for new subsidized Federal Stafford loans.

Read Entire Answer
What's the difference between a FAFSA and a Renewal FAFSA?
The Renewal FAFSA is available to students who filed the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) during the previous award year. It uses demographic data from the previous year’s FAFSA to pre-fill this year’s FAFSA. This can significantly reduce the time it will take to complete the FAFSA.

Read Entire Answer
How do graduate students qualify for financial aid?
To qualify for federal, state, and college financial aid for graduate school, you have to submit the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). The FAFSA is required to receive federal and state grants and scholarships, as well as federal student loans, including Perkins Loans, Direct Unsubsidized Loans, and Grad PLUS Loans.

Read Entire Answer

Find & Compare Private Student Loans for Your School: