Chase your dreams with these 5 best student loan plans in the United states.

Introduction: Chase your dreams with these 5 best student loan plans in the United states.

The cost of college can be staggering. Fortunately, there are dozens of student loan options available to help cover your tuition costs and other expenses while you’re in school. We’ve put together this list of our top five student loans based on the following criteria:

PNC Solution Loan® for Undergraduates

PNC Solution Loan® for Undergraduates is a student loan that offers a fixed interest rate and flexible repayment options. The loan has low rates and no origination fees, making it an attractive option for borrowers looking to finance their education. The loan is available to undergraduate students and can be used for tuition, fees and other expenses. The minimum credit score required is 640 and you must have a cosigner to qualify. If you meet the eligibility requirements, PNC Solution Loan® for Undergraduates can help cover your next semester’s costs.

Interest, Payment and Fees

  • Structures Available: Fixed and variable
  • Range of APRs: 
    • Fixed: 4.54% to 11.79%
    • Variable: 4.70% to 11.87

Repayment Flexibility:

  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Deferment options: Deferment options are available to members of the military and graduate students
  • Forbearance provisions? Borrowers can use 12 months of total forbearance across the life of the loan. However, this time can only be used in two month intervals with a full year between forbearance periods.
  • Death or disability discharge? Yes.
  • Repayment options: While in school, you can choose from deferred repayment, fixed repayment, interest repayment and principal and interest repayment plans. Once school and your grace period conclude, you must repay the principal and interest.
  • Co-signer release available? Yes.
  • Minimum loan amount: $1,000
  • Maximum loan amount: $50,000 per year

Eligibility:

  • Enrollment requirement: At least half-time, as determined by school 
  • Minimum FICO score: 670
  • Minimum income: None
  • Average credit score of approved applicants: Not disclosed
  • Average income of approved applicants: Not disclosed
  • Highest Debt-to-income ratio: Not available 
  • Available for international student borrowers? No 
  • Available throughout the US? Yes

Customer Service:

  • Loan servicer: American Education Services (AES).
  • Does the lender have its own customer service department or does it outsource? Own customer service
  • Application available online or by phone? Online or by phone
  • Rate quote available with soft credit pull? No
  • Related products: PNC also offers graduate loans and loan refinancing 
Chase your dreams with these 5 best student loan plans in the United states.

Summary: 

PNC’s private student loan offers very high customer satisfaction ratings and auto-pay discounts that are better than many competitors. 

Earnest: Undergraduate Student Loan

Earnest, a student loan lender for undergraduate students, offers a range of loan options that suit your needs. The company offers low interest rates and flexible repayment options.

The online presence is strong with Earnest being one of the most popular websites for loans in Australia today.

Interest, Payment and Fees

  • Structures Available: Fixed and variable
  • Range of APRs: 
    • Fixed: 4.74% to 13.03%
    • Variable: 3.04% to 11.69%

Repayment Flexibility:

  • Grace period: 9 months
  • Deferment options: Deferment options are available to members of the military and graduate students.
  • Forbearance provisions? Borrowers can use 12 months of total forbearance across the life of the loan in three-month intervals. 
  • Death or disability discharge? Yes.
  • Repayment options: While in school, you can choose from deferred repayment, fixed repayment, interest repayment and principal and interest repayment plans. Once school and your grace period conclude, you must repay the principal and interest.
  • Co-signer release available? Yes.
  • Minimum loan amount: $1,000
  • Maximum loan amount: Total cost of attendance

Eligibility:

  • Enrollment requirement: Full-time
  • Minimum FICO score: 650
  • Minimum income: $35,000
  • Average credit score of approved applicants: Not disclosed
  • Average income of approved applicants: Not disclosed
  • Highest Debt-to-income ratio: Not disclosed 
  • Available for international student borrowers? Only with a cosigner who is a U.S. citizen. 
  • Available throughout the U.S.? No, excluded states include: AK, CT, HI, IL, NH, NV, TX, and VA.

Customer Service: 

  • Loan servicer: Earnest
  • Does the lender have its own customer service or does it outsource? Own customer service
  • Application available online or by phone? Online
  • Rate quote available with soft credit pull? No
  • Related products: Graduate loans, parent loans and refinancing loans are also available from Earnest.

Summary: 

The undergraduate student loan offered by Earnest comes with several distinctive advantages. As long as your state allows it, this is a great option.

Chase your dreams with these 5 best student loan plans in the United states.

College Ave: Undergraduate Student Loan

College Ave: Undergraduate Student Loan

College Ave is a private student loan company that offers low interest rates and flexible repayment options.

The interest rate is fixed at 5.99% for undergraduate loans (and 6.49% for graduate loans) with no prepayment penalty, making it the lowest rate on this list by far. The monthly payment amount is also lower than most other options here, so you can save money on your monthly bills while paying off your debt faster than you would if using another option like Gradifi or LendKey!

Interest, Payment and Fees

  • Structures Available: Fixed and variable
  • Range of APRs: 
    • Fixed: 4.72% to 12.94%
    • Variable: 3.70% to 11.98%

Repayment Flexibility:

  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Deferment options: Deferment options may be available to members of the military and graduate students but must be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • Forbearance provisions? Forbearance requests are evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • Death or disability discharge? Yes.
  • Repayment options: While in school, you can choose from deferred repayment, flat rate repayment, interest repayment and principal and interest repayment plans. Once school and your grace period conclude, you must repay the principal and interest.
  • Co-signer release available? Yes.
  • Minimum loan amount: $1,000
  • Maximum loan amount: Total cost of attendance

Eligibility:

  • Enrollment requirement: At least half-time, as determined by school
  • Minimum FICO score: Mid-600s
  • Minimum income: $35,000
  • Average credit score of approved applicants: Mid-700s
  • Average income of approved applicants: Approximately $110,00 per year
  • Highest Debt-to-income ratio: Varies based on credit characteristics
  • Available for international student borrowers? Only with a cosigner who is a U.S. citizen
  • Available throughout the U.S.? Yes

Customer Service: 

  • Loan servicer: College Ave
  • Is the lender responsible for its own customer service or does it outsource it? Own customer service but with outsourced call center operations.
  • Application available online or by phone? Online
  • Rate quote available with soft credit pull? Yes
  • Related products: Graduate loans, parent loans and refinancing loans are also provided from College Ave.

Summary: 

With no hard credit check required to see what College Ave offers, it seems like a solid contender. If you apply and review their rates, there is really no risk involved. You should note, however, that College Ave makes no guarantees about its forbearance programs. 

LendKey: Undergraduate Student Loan

LendKey is a student loan lender that was founded in 2013. It offers loans for undergraduate and graduate students, as well as those who are attending community colleges or vocational schools. The company also offers fixed interest rates and variable rates, which can be adjusted depending on how much money you need to borrow.

LendKey’s interest rate reduction program is called LoanMax, which reduces your payment by 20% if you pay off your loan within six months; otherwise it will reduce it by 10%. This means that if your monthly payment is $200 per month with a 4% APR (annual percentage rate), then over time this will reduce down to $160 per month once the balance has been paid off completely—and this only requires making one extra payment every six months!

Interest, Payment and Fees

  • Structures Available: Fixed and Variable
  • Range of APRs: 
    • Fixed rates start at 5.36%
    • Variable rates start at 4.05%

Repayment Flexibility:

  • Grace period: 6 months
  • Deferment options: No deferment options for military members or graduate students.
  • Forbearance provisions? Borrowers can utilize up to 18 months of forbearance in six month intervals.
  • Death or disability discharge? Not guaranteed.
  • Repayment options: While in school, you can choose from flat rate repayment, interest repayment and principal and interest repayment plans. Once school and your grace period conclude, you must repay the principal and interest.
  • Co-signer release available? Yes.
  • Minimum loan amount: $5,000
  • Maximum loan amount: $125,000

Eligibility:

  • Enrollment requirement: At least half-time, as determined by school
  • Minimum FICO score: 660
  • Minimum income: $24,00
  • Average credit score of approved applicants: Mid-to-high 700s
  • Average income of approved applicants: Approximately $87,00 per year
  • Highest Debt-to-income ratio: Approximately 33% excluding housing costs.
  • Available for international student borrowers? No
  • Available throughout the U.S.? Yes

Customer Service: 

  • Loan servicer: LendKey.
  • Is the lender responsible for its own customer service or does it outsource? Own customer service.
  • Application available online or by phone? Online
  • Rate quote provided with soft credit pull? No
  • Related products: Graduate loans and refinancing loans are also available from Lendkey.

Summary: 

LendKey is a viable option if you want to work with a small bank while you still want the convenience of a major lender. While you’re at school, you’ll have to pay something every month.

SoFi: Undergraduate Student Loan

SoFi is a lender that offers a wide range of loan options for students. They have a low interest rate and offer flexible repayment plans, so if you’re looking to get your student loans paid off in as short a period of time as possible, they’re likely going to be the most advantageous option for you.

Interest, Payment and Fees

  • Structures Available: Fixed and Variable
  • Range of APRs: 
    • Fixed: 5.05% to 11.71%. 
    • Variable: 3.19% – 10.79%

Repayment Flexibility:

  • Grace period: 6 months, but only for deferred repayment plan.
  • Deferment options: Deferment options are available to members of the military and graduate students.
  • Forbearance provisions? Borrowers who lose their jobs are eligible for forbearance in three month increments and up to 12 months total over the life of the loan. During this time, borrowers must work with SoFi’s career advisors to identify employment options.
  • Death or disability discharge? Yes.
  • Repayment options: While in school, you can choose from deferred repayment, flat rate repayment, interest repayment and principal and interest repayment plans. Once school and your grace period conclude, you must repay the principal and interest.
  • Co-signer release available? Yes.
  • Minimum loan amount: $5,000
  • Maximum loan amount: Total cost of attendance

Eligibility:

  • Enrollment requirement: At least half-time, as determined by school
  • Minimum FICO score: 700
  • Minimum income: Not disclosed
  • Average credit score of approved applicants: Not revealed
  • Average income of approved applicants: Not disclosed
  • Highest Debt-to-income ratio: Not available
  • Available for international student borrowers? Not disclosed
  • Available throughout the U.S.? Yes

Customer Service: 

  • Loan servicer: MOHELA
  • Does the lender have its own customer service department or does it outsource it? Own customer service.
  • Application available online or by phone? Online
  • Rate quote available with soft credit pull? Yes (but a more severe pull may be necessary subsequently) 
  • Related products: Graduate loans, parent loans and refinancing loans are also provided through SoFi. 

Summary: 

The SoFi loan is another excellent option that offers plenty of perks that other lenders don’t. With just a soft credit pull needed to see personalized offers, there’s no reason not to see what they can do for you. Unfortunately, international students are out of luck. 

We evaluated lenders based on the range of options they provide, interest rates, repayment options and online resources.

It’s imperative to consider the range of options that lenders provide. Lenders have different interest rates and repayment options, which can make a difference in your overall experience with the lender.

In addition to interest rates, repayment options are another key factor when deciding which student loan provider is best for you. Some companies offer flexible repayment terms or income-based repayments (IBR), meaning you only pay back what you can afford based on your income and family size, rather than an amount set by default. Other companies offer standard fixed monthly payments that don’t change over time—these are often referred to as “pay as you earn” (PAYE) programs because they require students to make regular payments until they reach their full federal loan limit after graduation or drop out of school completely before graduating college altogether.”

Conclusion

In short, we found that some of the top student loans are more flexible than others. For example, SoFi has a wide range of repayment options and LendKey offers fixed interest rates with no origination fee or prepayment penalty. However, College Ave’s interest rates are higher than those offered by other lenders. Therefore, if you’re looking for a low monthly payment option this might not be the right choice for you. Our final takeaway is that there’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to choosing an undergraduate loan—it all depends on your personal situation!

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