An Introduction to Student Loans

An Introduction to Student Loans

Student loans are meant to help students who are unable to bear their educational expenses. Student loans are different in different countries in the way they are devised, but then the common types of student loans available are the undergraduate loans, college student loans, private student loans and federal family educational loans. Most of the student loans are issued by the government generally with lower interest rates when compared with the regular loans.

Student loan repayments are not made until the student completes his graduation. This facility helps him to concentrate on his studies and earn some little amount of money while he is studying, but repayment has to start once he finishes his education. There is a grace period of six months normally after the graduation, meant to be a cushioning period for the student to get into a job and start earning. Under certain circumstances, the federal student loans can be forgiven on an income contingent plan after 25 years. Also the payments are required to be paid off within a minimum period of time.

Private student loans are offered to the student based on the credit history of the applicant and the interest rate also will rely on this criterion. People with good credit history will be provided student loans on a lower interest rate and less fees. The advantage of private student loan is that, they have higher limits and also the repayment starts only after graduation. Private student loans can be utilized for purchasing computers, books etc. and payment of tuition fees.

Federal student loans are either given to the parents or to their wards directly. When the loan is availed by the student payments do not start when they are studying, but if it is given to their parents, they have to make payments immediately. The loan limit may also higher in that case. Federal loans do not require any co-signer as they are not based on the credit history of the applicants.

The advantages of student loans over other kind of loans are given below:

The main advantage of availing student loan is that the interest rates are very low and are very lenient. Even when the student enters his repayment period, there are many repayment options available, which allow the student to choose from so that they can be changed, based on the financial condition to suit their needs with some restrictions. The loans can be repaid even over a period of 30 years. Also, if the financial situation becomes worse the student will be eligible to defer repayment till 3 years. Some loans may even be forgiven.

Strategies adopted by students when they start repaying their student loans are as follows:

It might take either 6 months or more than that to get into a job by a student. In such cases many students take up temporary jobs, or part-time jobs, freelance jobs etc till they find a permanent job. Some share their room rent expenses with their friends by living together with, or resides nearer to the work place to cut down transportation costs. In times of financial crunch, some of them apply for forbearance through a lender, this helps them to hold off the payment for few months. Some students even go for student loan consolidation, which might bring them some relief.