Private Education Loans

Private education loans, also known as Alternative Loans, help bridge the gap between the actual cost of your education and the limited amount the government allows you to borrow in its programs.  Private loans are offered by private banks and there are no federal forms to complete.  Eligibility for private student loans often depends on your need, other aid, and your credit score.

There are different lenders to choose from. Loan terms and conditions change frequently making it difficult to keep an optimum list and to keep it current.  Therefore, we offer the following information in an effort to provide you with the information to choose the best possible loan for your needs and circumstances. 

Choosing a lender is a major decision.  Taking the time to review, question, and interview a potential lender is important.  The Financial Aid Office cannot recommend a lender as the perfect match for you.  Inquiry with the lender is the best and most accurate method to know and understand the terms and conditions a lender offers. 

FEDERAL AID FIRST

Private Loans are available for families who may not qualify for need-based aid or who may need additional assistance in meeting college costs.  These loan programs are intended to be used to supplement traditional forms of financial aid.  Students should exhaust federal borrowing options before turning to higher cost private loans.  Private loans may also have higher, market-based interest rates and usually require credit checks.

Private education loans tend to cost more than the education loans offered by the federal government.  The federal education loans offer fixed interest rates that are lower than the variable rates offered by most private student loans.  Since federal education loans are less expensive than and offer better terms than private student loans, you should exhaust your eligibility for federal student loans before resorting to private student loans.  Visit this federal web site to read about all of the advantages of federal loans:  http://federalstudentaid.ed.gov/federalaidfirst.