Finding the best student loan consolidation program for your particular situation is a relatively easy process, but you have to know what you are looking for. Not all student loan consolidations are the same, and each company or lender has different terms and qualifications. There are several things you should look for to be sure you are getting the best student loan consolidation you can.
Pay Attention to the Interest Rate and Finance Charges
First, the overall purpose of consolidation is to save money. This means that your consolidation should carry a lower interest rate than your current loans. Additionally, the finance charges should be lower than those of your existing loans.
Make Your Student Loan Debt More Manageable
Another purpose for consolidating student loans is to make your academic debt more manageable. Therefore, the best student loan consolidation program for your specific situation will offer the ability to lower your monthly payments. This may mean an extended or graduated repayment program. Extending your loans to fifteen or thirty years will mean that you pay more in interest charges, but it will make your payments more manageable in the meantime.
Customer Service is Extremely Important!
Ease of application and getting the consolidation is also important. While some lenders may make you jump through hoops to get a loan, there are many companies that will grant student loan consolidations without so much as a credit check. These are the companies that most students require, due to the amount of their debt or a lack of credit.
Something many people don’t consider when looking for a student loan consolidation is customer service. If you are going to be paying on your loans for many years, you want to be sure that the people you are dealing with will be courteous and helpful. If you have a difficult time dealing with the company in obtaining information and applying for the loan, you will likely have difficulties with them in the future as your loan is serviced.
In the end, you should always compare companies and choose the best student loan consolidation program for your particular situation. Never take the first offer blindly, and always do your research. You will find that when you are with a good lender, everything else tends to take care of itself.