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Smart Borrowing

Once you've established how much you've saved for college, what scholarship money is available and how much you can borrow from low-cost federal loans Federal Loan - A federal loan is any educational loan guaranteed by the federal government. Federal loans are processed in accordance with the United States Department of Education regulations and often have different lending criteria compared to credit-based loans., you may realize you still need more money. That's the role private student loans Private Loans - Loans that are not sponsored by the federal government. Private loans, funded by private companies, are not subject to the same restrictions as federal loans. can play. They make up the difference between what you have and what you still need. As with all loans, it's smart not to over borrow. Otherwise, you'll end up paying back more than you have to.

Although federal loans generally offer more favorable rates, private loans offer a possible solution to those needing to fill a gap between the amount of scholarships, grants and federal loans they receive and the ultimate cost of their education. Also, many students don't fully understand that factors such as credit scores Credit Score - Your credit score is a number based on the information in your credit file that shows how likely you are to pay a loan back on time - the higher your score, the less risk you represent., cosigners Cosigner - An additional applicant added to a loan to meet the creditworthiness guidelines, usually a parent but not always. A cosigner will have the same legal responsibility on the loan as the primary borrower. and the loan amount can affect the amount they'll pay. For example, asking a parent, other relative or trustworthy friend to cosign a private student loan can help to secure the best possible payment terms.

Sometimes federal aid is not enough to pay for your college expenses.

Once you have utilized school savings and exhausted your scholarship and federal aid options, fill any remaining gap with a private student loan.

Private student loans are an alternative loan choice, which can be sent directly to you or your school and they are not necessarily based on need.

Private student loans can fill the gap between what you have in aid and low cost loans, and what you need to pay for your first-choice school. Or it could mean the difference between attending school and not going at all.

Considering a private student loan may be a wise choice compared to high-interest credit cards, tapping into your home equity or dipping into retirement money. It also provides an opportunity for students to borrow responsibly.

Part of smart borrowing is getting the lowest interest rate possible. And that is where a cosigner comes in. Usually, parents cosign for their children, but any credit-worthy adult can do it!

Borrower's Rights

Borrowing can sometimes be overwhelming. Knowing what to expect can make the process that much easier.

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The Real Cost

Tuition, room and board, books, computer, lab fees, and transportation to and from school. A lot goes into the cost of education. We can help you sort it out.

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