Like all loans, college loans taken out to fund education and living expenses, have to be repaid sometime. There is little chance of any student or graduate escaping that responsibility. As soon as the period of grace ends (usually on graduation day) that reality comes to bear. Thankfully, a private student loan consolidation program can make life a lot easier.
There is no doubt that the weight of debt can be quite heavy for students, with research showing that college graduates enter the jobs market with debts of $30,000 on average. This means that properly managing college debt is an essential part of the early part of working life.
This is where a consolidation program can be of great benefit, clearing the outstanding balances on student loans and replacing them with one, more affordable debt. However, there are some issues that need to be considered before choosing the program most suitable.
Typically, students take out at least 5 loans while in college, often to cover living expenses as well as pay their tuition fees. But none of them are cleared before taking out another, creating a complicated web of loans, repayments and interest rates. A private student loan consolidation program simplifies matters.
All of the debts are grouped together and cleared with a single loan. And because it is a single loan, a single interest rate is applied. This invariably means the overall cost of the best is lowered. And because the loan term is lengthened to as much as 25 years, the monthly repayments are kept low.
So, managing college debt in this way ensures it is fully repaid and replaced with a more affordable debt that places less pressure on the shoulders of the graduate. But there are conditions to consider when clearing student loans.
Conditions to Consider
First and foremost is the type of loans taken out when in college. The two types are private and federal loans, but these do not mix well in one consolidation program. This is why there are private student loan consolidation programs and federal consolidation programs, and the terms of each are very different.
Federal loans are typically better in their terms than private loans because the support of federal government removes risk and lowers the interest rate charged. A private loan typically charges higher interest so is more expensive. And because of the greater expense, managing college debt from private loans is usually a priority.
Also, private consolidation programs accommodate a wider range of loans, while approval is open to practically anyone who wants to make repaying their student loans more affordable. Federal programs are exclusive to students in dire financial situations who need assistance.
Other Factors To Consider
A private student loan consolidation program offers plenty of benefits to students and graduates looking to clear their debts. Most are already mentioned, but others include the long-term benefit of improving the credit rating. This is due to the clearance of the individual loans, which are marked down in the credit record as fully repaid, but it is important to maintain repayment of the consolidation loan too.
These programs are available to students still in college as well as graduates. And the fact they can be granted 25-year terms means managing college debt becomes very affordable. Graduates, meanwhile, can get terms of up to 30 years.
However, keep in mind that it takes time for the application to be processed, with many lenders taking about 6 weeks to confirm approval or not. And, while awaiting approval, it is essential that the usual monthly repayments on the student loans are made.