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Recommendations for private school loans?

Valued Contributor

Recommendations for private school loans?

My daughter may need private student loans for 1 year. Then she will be in graduate school and her federal loan limits will go up. She should be OK then.


Having never looked at private loans before, I looked a bit at Sallie Mae. Is this a good source for private student loans? Any other recommendations?


Any experiences good, bad, or ugly with other lenders?



Message 1 of 6
Valued Contributor

Re: Recommendations for private school loans?

Your daughter's financial aid office may have suggestions for lenders - you can also look into financial insitutions where either of you have an existing relationship.  Sometimes there are benefits to having multiple types of accounts with one bank or credit union.


This might also be a good time to seriously evaluate if the amount of debt your daughter is taking on is appropriate for her future career plans and earning potential.  If she has maxed her federal loans after 3 years, she is likely carrying a serious amount of debt, to add another year of private loans + the cost of a master's degree to that may leave her with a serious financial challenge after graduation.


Just be sure this is really the best possible decision, and take into consideration that she may need you to co-sign on that loans, which requires you to accept the responsibillty for that debt if she cannot pay it.

Message 2 of 6
New Contributor

Re: Recommendations for private school loans?

I'm not an expert...but I tell everyone to avoid private loans at all costs! Mainly because they cannot be consolidated with federal loans, and cannot get any of the federal payment plans.

example, my best friend has 100,000 in federal loans. She is on the income based repayment plan and she pays $66 a month. (single mother and she makes about 50k a year).

she also had 30k in private loans. Her payment is $380 a month and from interest the loan is up to a 51k balance. They will not make payment plans, lower her payment, or give her any deferments (she had used the year they give).
she could not afford that large payment and the loan was charged off. Since it cannot be included in bankruptcy, there's nothing she can do. They will eventually sue her. She also had a co-signer and they are going after her as well.

if you decide private loans are your only choice, sit down and figure what she will make after she graduates. Will she be able to afford a large payment and still live? And if you co-sign, realize that if she defaults, you will be responsible for the payment.

I really hope you are able to get it figured out and do what's best for your family!
Message 3 of 6
New Contributor

Re: Recommendations for private school loans?

If you have good credit, private loans can be at better rates than federal loans. However, with a variable APR, keep in mind that this can be risky. It's worth noting that you can deduct the student loan interest from your taxes if you are below a middling income--this is true even if you refinance, so long as you don't refinance for more than you have in student loans.
Message 4 of 6
Valued Contributor

Re: Recommendations for private school loans?

Thank you everyone for the input. My daughter will be a psychiartic nurse practitioner when she completes her education. We live in a rural state, so she plans to do what I did and work with an undereserved population. She will get loan repayment through the National Health Service Corps. It is my understanding that private loans qualify for repayment through that program. I will check.


If she can't do it through the NHSC, she will at the very least working for a nonprofit and make 10 yrs of payments, with the rest forgiven.


I am a family nurse practitioner, and the NHSC paid all my loans. In a rural state, it's not tough to find an appropriate site and get loan repayment.


Again, thank you for the input, and I appreciate the words of caution. I thought long and hard before taking on loans myself, but in the end, it was all paid.

Message 5 of 6
Frequent Contributor

Re: Recommendations for private school loans?

Anyone BUT Sallie Mae!!! Seriously. I could write a book. Unless the interest rate they are offering is WAY less than competitors, run don't walk away from Sallie Mae. 


Is she applying under her own name/income or yours? if hers, she may qualify for Perkins Loans, whch are forgive-able for nurses (not sure of all the requirements but I just saw this the other day on my Perkins promissory note so it may be worth looking into). 


Good luck! Last piece of unsolicited advice: do not defer the loans after graduation. They like to sell this to you. Next thing you know, your balance has doubled. 

Message 6 of 6