Private LoansPrivate loans are available through a limited number of education lenders to assist students when federal loans are not an option. These unsecured loans can be more costly as federal loans may offer more favorable terms and conditions. Interest rates are typically variable and may be tied to the prime rate, LIBOR rate, or treasury bill rate. Borrower eligibility, co-signer requirements, interest rates, maximum loan levels, and repayment options vary according to the program. These loans are based on creditworthiness, which is based on the applicant's credit history.Unfortunately, due to the state of the economy, many lenders have stopped offering private loans for educational costs, tightened credit criteria or raised interest rates and fees in an effort to offset the higher cost of raising capital to lend. At this time, there are about a dozen national lenders, a handful of credit unions and a small number of states offering private educational loan programs. For specific details on these loans, we recommend you go to Student Lending Analytics, an independent research firm with no lender or financial service affiliations, which offers unbiased information on private educational loans, lenders, rates and fees. Please pay special attention to the link on their main page to research your state loan programs which often come with better terms, conditions fees and interest rates.
It is recommended that you request a copy of your credit report annually to evaluate your ability to secure private education loan funds. You may obtain a free annual credit report at: www.annualcreditreport.com.
You may also contact a local credit bureau in your area or one of the three national credit bureaus listed below:
P.O. Box 105873
Atlanta, GA 30348
P.O. Box 390
Springfield, PA 19064
P.O. Box 2104
Allen, TX 75013
Applying for Private Loans
To apply for a private educational loan, you must select a participating lender and be directed to their application process. Many lenders offer an online process with the ability to electronically sign your application. As you research available loans, be sure to review the websites or ask the lenders how your needs & the terms and conditions of their loans may effect your individual situation. Listed below are some items you may wish to consider before applying for a loan:
- Is the interest rate based on a fixed interest rate or a variable interest rate?
- Does this loan have a maximum (capped) variable interest rate?
- Do I receive a better interest rate if I have a co-signer?
- Is there a requirement to make payments while in-school?
- When do I begin repayment on this loan?
- Can I use this loan if I am not making Satisfactory Academic Progress?
- Does this loan offer any repayment deferments or forbearances?
Pursuant to Section 155 of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, (HEA) and to satisfy the requirements of Section 128(e)(3) of the Truth in Lending Act, a lender must obtain a completed self-certification form (Adobe PDF) signed by the applicant before a private education loan can be disbursed. Some lenders may ask you for the Quinnipiac University Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine OPE ID# which is 00140200.