I was wondering how many times one can consolidate federal student loans.
I can't seem to find a limit which begs the question: why can't someone default, consolidate and default, consolidate etc. over and over?
You don't need good credit to consolidate. I'm talking consolidation through the department of ed. Not refinancing.
I found the following on their website:
So there are certain circumstances where you could reconsolidate a consolidation loan, but I doubt a loan in default would be one of those circumstances.
"Borrowers can consolidate a single federal consolidation loan if the loan is in default status or has been submitted to a guaranty agency for default aversion by the loan holder"
I was told I couldn't consolidate more than once. Consolidation is wrapping multiple single loans (i.e., junior year semester 1, jr yr semester 2, senior yr semester 1) into ONE loan.
Once you consolidate, there really is nothing left to consolidate. So, in order to get several single loans out of default, borrows have the option to consolidate. However, once you consolidate, there really isn't anything left to consolidate. You can consolidate several UNSUBSIZED federal loans into one loan ... and you can consolidate SUBSIDIZED federal loans into one loan. Hope that makes sense.
Once you consolidate, and go into default, you've exhausted your other options and are only able to do a loan rehab.
be careful with consolidation (unsolicited advice, sorry):
Loan 1: $15k
Loan 2: $5k
Loan 3: $2k
If I were in the above hyopthetical situation, and in default, I would NOT choose consolidation over rehab. Why? I would want to rehab all three loans, pay off the $2k (i mean, lets be honest, most people have more than even $2k in CC debt) and then take a hard look at the $5k loan to see if it would be beneficial to me to pay it off.
However, I may choose consolidation:
Loan 1: $15k @9.25 APR
Loan 2: $firstname.lastname@example.org APR
COnolidate both to a lower APR
The numbers are scary, and boy do they suck, but you will need to look at the total interest paid over the life of the loans as well as the consolidation interest.
Good luck. I will say, 9 months is not a long time, and if you are committed to rehabing the loan during that period AS WELL AS moving forward, it really is the best option (my opinion)