Fixed Rate Student Loans
From tuition and books to room and board, college can be very expensive. As a result, many students rely on private and federal student loans to help them pay for their education.
Fixed-rate student debt, in particular, is a very common option for students in need of assistance.
These have fixed interest rates, meaning the interest rate remains the same for the entire term.
This makes it easier to manage your payments as they are the same from month to month.
Fixed-rate student debt is available through both federal and private — each of which has advantages and disadvantages.
Private options are borrowed from any lender aside from the federal government,
These can offer low-interest rates, flexible repayment plans, and generous borrowing limits. They can also be easier to qualify for than federal options and are available to half-time students.
Private student options can also be a great way to supplement your federal student options if you need a little bit of extra financial aid.
- Federal Student Loans
These are funded by the federal government.
These are a great option as they offer low-interest rates, a variety of income-based repayment plans, and various forgiveness programs.
Federal student loans generally offer more flexibility than private options.
Fixed-rate student debt is great for students who want their payments to be predictable and for those that don’t expect to pay off their debt before the term is over.
Benefits of fixed-rate student debt include:
- Available from a variety of lenders
- Fixed monthly payments
- Flexible repayment plans
- Low-interest rates
- Can be used for any education expenses
- And more
While variable-rate student debt may offer low introductory rates, fixed-rate options are a great option for students who prioritize predictability.
How Much Does it Cost?
The total cost of your student debt is dependent on your interest rate, balance, term, and fees — all of which vary on a lender by lender basis.
Interest rates on private student options tend to fall between 4% and 13%, depending on your credit score and financial wellbeing.
For federal student products, you can view the current interest rates here. This page also has information regarding federal student fees and borrowing limits.
Private student products are typically available in amounts equal to your school’s certified cost of attendance, which includes tuition, living expenses, books, and more.
Once you receive your offer, you can enter your term, balance, and interest rate into a calculator to see your monthly payments and the total cost.
Lastly, many options will carry various fees, including origination, prepayment, late payment, and other fees. Be sure to carefully review your terms to ensure you are aware of any fees you might be responsible for.
To make your application process as easy as possible, make sure to keep these tips in mind when applying.
- Find a Lender
If you’re applying for private option, it’s important to research and compare rates and terms from several different lenders.
For federal options, you’ll need to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
This application is used to determine your financial eligibility for various federal student loans and grants.
- Gather Your Documents
Before applying, be sure to gather the documents that you’ll need to complete your application.
This may include:
- Personal identifications
- Social Security Number
- Bank statements, pay stubs, and tax returns
- College enrollment information
- Cost of attendance
- And more
Each lender will have its own application requirements, so be sure to check with your lender for a more comprehensive list.
Once you’ve chosen a lender and gathered your documents, it’s time to apply.
After submitting your application, be sure to stay in contact with your lender in case they need any more information to process your application.
If you are approved, you’ll receive an offer, which you can choose to accept or decline. If you agree to the terms, you can sign your agreement and receive your financial aid.
Monthly payments at 5% interest rate on a 10 year loan with a $22,000 balance