Always borrow federal loans before pursuing private/alternative loans.
Federal Perkins Loan
Awarded based on exceptional need.
Interest is subsidized and fixed at 5%. No fees.
Favorable benefits may be lost upon consolidation.
REPAYMENT begins 9 months after graduation or dropping below half-time enrollment status.
Federal Stafford Loan
Interest accrues starting 6 months after graduation.
Fixed interest rate is 4.5% if loan originated on/after July 1, 2010 for undergraduate students.
Interest accrues during school.
Fixed interest rate is 6.8% if loan originated on/after July 1, 2006.
On loans first disbursed on or after July 1, 2009, annual limits have increased by $2,000 for independent and dependent undergrads.
REPAYMENT begins 6 months after graduation or after dropping below half-time enrollment status.
Federal Parent PLUS Loan
If loan originated on/after July 1, 2006:
Direct PLUS fixed interest rate is 7.9% with 4% fees.
REPAYMENT begins 60 days after full disbursement, or 6 months after student graduates or drops below half-time. Interest continues to accrue during deferment.
Federal Consolidation Loan
Combine loans to one lender.
Fixed interest rate is the weighted average of the loans rounded up to the nearest 1/8 of a % and capped at 8.25%.
Eligibility, interest rate and fees based on better of borrower and cosigner credit scores. More expensive than Federal student loans.
For more information on private/alternative loans, visit: www.finaid.org/privateloans