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If you’re choosing the standard or graduated plans, your repayment term will depend on the total balance of the loans you’re consolidating, plus the balance of other loans you listed.Your monthly payments will be fixed on the standard plan, or start small and slowly increase on the graduated plan.There are a variety of private lenders that offer student loan refinancing, each with different potential interest rates, loan terms and features. When you consolidate your student loans, you essentially combine multiple loans into one.To facilitate the consolidation, a lender will pay off your current loans and issue you a new loan for the total amount you owe.Your total loan balance will impact your Direct Consolidation Loan’s repayment period and monthly payment. If you plan to use the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, you may want to choose Fed Loan Servicing, as it manages the program and your loan will be transferred to Fed Loan Servicing once you apply for PSLF. When you consolidate your loans, you may be able to choose the Standard Repayment Plan, Graduated Repayment Plan, Extended Repayment Plan or Income-Contingent Repayment Plan.If you’re using the paper application, you’ll mail the application to the servicer of your choice. You could also choose the Income-Based Repayment Plan, the Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan or Revised Pay As You Earn Repayment Plan as long as your consolidated loan doesn’t include a parent PLUS Loan.Consolidating or refinancing student loans are two popular options that could help you manage your payments, save money and open up additional options for loan forgiveness and repayment.
Dealing with long-term debt can be difficult, but having a strategy and tools can help.
“Never pay a fee to consolidate your student loans,” says Kantrowitz. You don’t need to consolidate all your loans, and doing so may be a bad idea in some circumstances.
You have the option of listing loans that you don’t want to consolidate but that you want factored into your total loan balance. You can choose among Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates, Navient, Nelnet or Fed Loan Servicing.
A loan with a longer term may have a lower monthly payment, but it can also significantly increase how much you pay over the life of the loan.
View the Total Cost of Borrowing Before you apply, we encourage you to carefully consider whether consolidating your existing debt is the right choice for you.