Student Loans: Choosing The Best Lender

Students who need to borrow money for college can feel intimidated. There are Perkins loans, Stafford loans, unsubsidized loans, the FAFSA, and other factors to consider. You almost need a college degree to understand the terminology!

Stay focused and you will find the funds. There are loans available for anyone who needs money to finance their education. Just be sure to select a loan (and lender) that best meet your needs.

Experts at ClearPoint Credit Counseling Solutions offer tips to help students secure and save on educational loans.

Begin with FAFSA: First find out if you qualify for a federal loan. Federal educational loans offer fixed interest rates and more repayment options. To find out if you qualify, complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, otherwise known as FAFSA. Do this as early as possible in the year you plan to start college. Colleges will use FAFSA to determine your financial aid package (which could include grants, loans and other financial assistance).

Next, the Financial Aid Office: Talk to a college financial aid administrator about your options. Check out your school’s website as well. It probably offers additional information on available loans and lenders.

Consider Federal Loans First: Federal loans are based on financial need, and offered through a financial-aid package. If you qualify, pick a subsidized loan (the government pays interest on the loan while you are in school). The two types of subsidized loans (Perkins and Stafford), are made by colleges that participate in the Federal Direct Loan program. If your school does not participate, you will need to apply to a bank, savings and loan or credit union that provides money under federal student loan programs. You can find lenders on your own or use those recommended by your college financial aid office.

Going the Private/Alternative Loan Route: If you don’t qualify …read more

Source: CBS local Boston


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