Can school loans help pay for college?

School loans are available to help pay for college after the student has used free money like grants and scholarships. They can be used to pay for an undergraduate school, graduate school, or professional school education.

There are several different types of school loans.

  • There are federal student loans, such as the Direct Loan and the PLUS Loan.
  • There are private student loans, which are offered by banks and non-bank financial institutions. Most private student loans are school-certified, where the college or university confirms the student’s eligibility and the loan limits.
  • There are non-education loans, such as signature loans and home equity loans, which can be used to pay for school.

Federal and private student loans can be deferred while the borrower is enrolled in school on at least a half-time basis. Some school loans offer a grace period after the borrower drops below half-time enrollment or graduates and before the repayment period begins. Most school loans offer a 6-month grace period.

School loans are not limited to state schools. They can be used for career schools, vocational/technical schools, private colleges, in addition to public colleges. Most students in graduate school borrow from federal and private student loans. Some private lenders have specialized law school loan and medical school loan programs.

Besides school loans for college, there are also private school loans for private K-12 schools, such as the Sallie Mae K-12 Family Education Loan and Your Tuition Solution.