To request technical assistance while you are signed in and completing the Federal Direct Consolidation Loan Application and Promissory Note online, select the “Contact Us” tab in the top menu bar of StudentLoans.gov. From there, you can either complete and submit the feedback form or select “Additional Information” and contact the Student Loan Support Center at the phone number provided.
I’m grateful I found this page via Pinterest but I’m also angry I didn’t know it before. I’ve been deferring my $40000 consolidation loans for 8 years because I could never afford even the minimum payment. My current balance is now $63000. If I understand correctly, I could’ve been on IBR for 8 years now, probably with a payment of $0 since my income is usually right at poverty level?? I had checked into this before on Sallie Mae/Navient’s website, but it always said that the minimum payment is $208 for IBR (even with an income of $17k 2 person family)…I had no clue I had to go to a separate website (Studentloans.gov) to get a different answer. So frustrating that SM/Navient seems to NOT want people to know this information. I feel like I could’ve been 8 years closer to forgiveness.
I have significant amount of loans. I applied for a repayment plan and was told I did not qualify for Paye because I had loans before 2007 so I was out on REPaye. My partner and I are now thinking of getting married (so I can get his medical insurance benefits) but I just read that under REPaye they always look at your joint income even if you’re married filing separate. Can I change my payment plan to IBR so only my AGI would be taken into consideration? I’ve only made 6 qualifying thus far. Also, would IBR increase or decrease my current payment? I’m hoping the repayment plans are not permanent. We are also speaking to our tax person to see what specific pros/cons us potentially getting married will have on our financial situation. I know they are several cons so we are weighing out our options of getting married now or until I’m down with PSLF. -Thank you
Annual Percentage Rates (APR), loan term and monthly payments are estimated based on analysis of information provided by you, data provided by lenders, and publicly available information. All loan information is presented without warranty, and the estimated APR and other terms are not binding in any way. Lenders provide loans with a range of APRs depending on borrowers' credit and other factors. Keep in mind that only borrowers with excellent credit will qualify for the lowest rate available. Your actual APR will depend on factors like credit score, requested loan amount, loan term, and credit history. All loans are subject to credit review and approval.
Refinancing my student loans through Laurel Road is the best thing that could have happened for my personal finances. The online application was very straightforward and I was approved within a week of applying. The customer service has been nothing but professional, promptly answering any questions I have about my account. Throughout the lifetime of my loan I will save over $20,000!

I am conflicted bc after reading your articles I feel like it will still make more sense for me to switch plans (in order to pay 10% of income as opposed to 15% monthly and bc I have not paid much off my debt thus far in a few years). However, my family has advised me that I need to see real numbers to know how much I will owe when my loans are forgiven in 25 years when my taxes are due. In my head adding an extra $35k to my $206k balance will be just the same when those taxes are due-seemingly impossible. But it is true that I do not know how to calculate the actual numbers to have a better idea of what kind of added interest the added $35k will make to my total that will be forgiven in 25yrs which I will then owe in taxes.


For example, if you have both Direct Loans and other types of federal student loans, and you have been making payments toward PSLF on your Direct Loans, you should not consolidate your Direct Loans along with your other loans. Similarly, if you have Federal Perkins Loans and you are employed in an occupation that would qualify you for Perkins Loan cancellation benefits, you should not include your Perkins Loans when you consolidate. Leaving out your Direct Loans or Perkins Loans will preserve the benefits on those loans.

I currently have done 1 year in the Army Reserve after doing 5 years in the Air National Guard. I haven’t received a bonus from the Army because I was not eligible for any. Is there a program like the PSLF for people in the Guard/Reserve since we’re technically federal/DoD employees?? I was in school to be a pilot which ran me up to about $90,000 total…I enlisted to the Air National Guard where they did blood work to find out I have a Sickle Cell Trait and cannot fly unpressurized aircraft(hence cannot go through flight training). I pretty much wasted my time with school. I cannot file bankruptcy either or I’ll be discharged from the Army Reserve. Please Help!!!!


Like other forms of debt, you can refinance a student loan (both private student loans and federal student loans are eligible for refinancing). With most lenders, you start with a rate estimate, which doesn’t require a hard credit inquiry. When comparing rates from different lenders, be sure to pay attention to additional key differences, such as fees, before making a final decision (Earnest has no fees, for what it’s worth).
I have had a student loan since 1990 when I was 17years old. It started out as a $3500 and today (27 years later) I owe $4500 – how is this possible? I remember 2 years ago i was scheduled to receive $2600 back in federal taxes and they took it all….I have attended college 3 times and I know that had to have been in good standing as well as in deferment so how can i owe more now than I did when I got the loan? I am currently in a rehabilitation program paying $5 a month but the interest continues to grow I will never get out from underneath this gray cloud. Believe me if I had the money I would pay it. I owe peanuts compared to some. Why are they allowed to have the interest accrue on a school loan. Just seems wrong.

Variable rate, based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate ("LIBOR") published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of October 1, 2019, the one-month LIBOR rate is 2.05%. Variable interest rates range from 2.25%- 9.24% (2.25%-9.24% APR) and will fluctuate over the term of the borrower's loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Fixed interest rates range from 3.45%-9.49% (3.45% - 9.49% APR) based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Lowest rates shown are for eligible, creditworthy applicants with a graduate level degree, require a 5-year repayment term and include our Loyalty discount and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. The maximum variable rate on the Education Refinance Loan is the greater of 21.00% or Prime Rate plus 9.00%. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Citizens One is required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The borrower will be presented with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before they accept the terms and conditions of their loan.


LendKey: Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
We are a family of 5 with one income – my wife went back to school a couple of years ago. My income has risen in very small amounts over the past 5 years but not enough to even pay the interest let alone the principal. I can keep doing the IBR program and watch the interest continue to drive the loan amount through the roof — but I am hoping you know of something better, some way to stop the madness.
My advice for you is to first sign up for one of the Income-Based Student Loan Repayment Plans so that your monthly payments are dropped to an affordable amount, then get on the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program (I think your status as a Reservist on permanent active duty will qualify, but you’ll have to double check on that), which will allow you to get your loans discharged after making payments for a set number of years, no matter how much debt remains.

The NURSE Corps Loan Repayment Program (NHSC) – This program was previously called the Nursing Education Loan Repayment Program (NELRP), and was created to help encourage RN’s to work in underserved hospitals and clinics, by offering them the chance to write off some of their student loans for qualifying service. The way it works is that RN’s will are able to have 60% of their Nursing loans written off for serving 2 years at a qualifying facility, along with 25% more for 1 additional year. That’s a pretty dang good deal, but it means you’d have to be willing to work at an underserved hospital or clinic, which could be a stressful, frustrating experience.
I have student loan for about $25000. I wanted to become a teacher. Online college assured me that once i finish my teaching degree and work in the field for 5 years my loan will be completely waived off. I have about year and a 1/2 left over to finish this degree but I had a medical emergency. While the Dentist was examining my mouth his hand slipped and the sharp needle went under my tongue. I filed a lawsuit but he claims that never happened since then my nerve that was connected to my head from my mouth was pressed in. I had plenty of medical bill which I paid off and now I’m left with sharp shooting pain from my mouth to my head because of which I have difficulty continuing my education and becoming a teacher. What should I do?
I took out Federal loans, Perkins and Stafford Loans. Sallie Mae now handles them and consolidated my loans. I borrowed money for this education beginning in 1990. Interest has accumulated and as of today, I am not employed. I have filed forbearances, deferments, etc. and I keep accumulating interest and making no payments. I am wondering if I can qualify for “forgiveness” on this debt. It is now around $29,000.
Specific Annual Percentage Rate (APRs) offered within these ranges will depend on a variety of factors including your creditworthiness and other application details. Annual percentage rates (APRs) reflect 0.25% discount for optional enrollment in autopay. Your approval for an Earnest Loan is subject to the full underwriting of your loan application. Read more about qualifying for a loan with Earnest here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility.
Variable rate, based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate ("LIBOR") published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of October 1, 2019, the one-month LIBOR rate is 2.05%. Variable interest rates range from 2.25%- 9.24% (2.25%-9.24% APR) and will fluctuate over the term of the borrower's loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Fixed interest rates range from 3.45%-9.49% (3.45% - 9.49% APR) based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. Lowest rates shown are for eligible, creditworthy applicants with a graduate level degree, require a 5-year repayment term and include our Loyalty discount and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. The maximum variable rate on the Education Refinance Loan is the greater of 21.00% or Prime Rate plus 9.00%. Subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Citizens One is required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The borrower will be presented with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before they accept the terms and conditions of their loan.
If Lender agrees (in its sole discretion) to postpone or reduce any monthly payment(s) for a period of time, interest on the loan will continue to accrue for each day principal is owed. Although the borrower might not be required to make payments during such a period, the borrower may continue to make payments during such a period. Making payments, or paying some of the interest, will reduce the total amount that will be required to be paid over the life of the loan. Interest not paid during any period when Lender has agreed to postpone or reduce any monthly payment will be added to the principal balance through capitalization (compounding) at the end of such a period, one month before the borrower is required to resume making regular monthly payments.
Tim, thanks for doing what you do here. Any word on changes to the PSLF program, in lieu of the proposed $57K cap? I’m in the IBR program, working for a 501(c)3 nonprofit, and have been making qualifying payments for approximately six years – and I’m terrified that changes to the PSLF program will affect me. All my loans are federal. Also, I’ve been told by my loan servicer in the past that I don’t do anything “now” for PSLF, that I wait until closer to the end of the 10 years. Any insight into that?
Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).
Student loan Refinance: Fixed rates from 3.46% APR to 5.98% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 2.05% APR to 5.98% APR (with AutoPay). Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at either 8.95% or 9.95% depending on term of loan. See APR examples and terms. Lowest variable rate of 2.05% APR assumes current 1 month LIBOR rate of 2.05% minus 0.15% margin minus 0.25% ACH discount. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, the fixed or variable interest rate offered will depend on your creditworthiness, and the term of the loan and other factors, and will be within the ranges of rates listed above. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. See eligibility details. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account. *To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit inquiry. Unlike hard credit inquiries, soft credit inquiries (or soft credit pulls) do not impact your credit score. Soft credit inquiries allow SoFi to show you what rates and terms SoFi can offer you up front. After seeing your rates, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit inquiry. Hard credit inquiries (or hard credit pulls) are required for SoFi to be able to issue you a loan. In addition to requiring your explicit permission, these credit pulls may impact your credit score. Terms and Conditions Apply. SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
The Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program – Nurses have always been able to take advantage of the PSLF program, and for good reason! It was created specifically to help encourage people to take up work in public service positions, and no job defines public service better than that of a Nurse. Any Nurse who holds a full-time, qualifying position will be able to have the entirety of their student loan balance forgiven after they’ve made 10 years worth (120) of monthly payments on their debt, no matter how much is left when that 120th payment is made!
It's that simple.  What's even better is that your income could be low enough to qualify for zero or minimal repayment, at which your loan will be forgiven at the end. Yes, there may be tax consequences, but that shouldn't deter you from these programs. It is the best alternative if you can't afford your loans and you are looking for forgiveness options (and we discuss the taxes a bit at the end of the article).
I just have come across your website and this blog. A job well done, and thank you! I had to step down from my career in September of 2009 and file for disability. I was awarded full disability in August of 2011, and it was retroactive back to the time of initial filing – in September of 2009. I have been utilizing forbearance all this time, not knowing about “TPD Discharge” until this past week. My forbearance is up in six days, from today (according to Navient (formally Sallie Mae as I am sure you know), and I only have a little time left on forbearance – “student loan debt burden.” I have always paid any debt I owed and had full intentions of doing this as well. However, I had no clue my health and a surgery in 2011 to correct the “issue” would go awry overnight. I have read some on the “total and permanent disability discharge” and see that if they approve they would monitor you for five years to make sure you did not return to work. My goal is to return to work. I refuse to take “no” for an answer from a lot “people.” I just lost almost four years of returning to work after surgery due to the “mess up” with the surgery, and the fact that a neurosurgeon will not see a prior surgical patient until after a three-year-mark from the original surgery. I finally have consult appointments with to NS’s the first of December. Do you know if the TPD Discharge is retroactive (or if I can even apply if I am looking for it to be retroactive?” As well, I need to do something, quickly as my forbearance ends in six days, as I stated above. Would you suggest applying for a new forbearance right now and then embarking on the TPD Discharge? I feel horrible about this as I always pay my debt, but the interest and such is accruing, I do not make the money I used to make, no matter how much I made all these years working, your disability income is not substantial to survive on a “bare note” these days. I just need some help in understanding or if you have any thoughts about what to do. Thank you again for your help. I hope you enjoy your weekend!
I owed 160,000 on student’s loans; I qualified for the 10 years forgiveness plan. I have been paying since 2007. My income is not that high, so I have to get a second job in order to be able to make the payments for the student loans. Last year, I found out that none of the payments I made since 2009 qualified for the 10 years forgiveness program, because I was paying under the wrong plan and not the IBR plan, nobody told me that in order to qualified for the 10 year forgiveness program the condition was to be under the IBR payment. Although, the payments before were higher than what I’m paying now under the IBR plan.
Obama student loan forgiveness. There’s no such thing as “Obama student loan forgiveness.” However, some student “debt relief” companies use it as a catch-all term for free federal programs — which they charge to enroll borrowers in. If you encounter a company offering “Obama student loan forgiveness,” consider it a red flag. Enrolling in federal programs like income-based repayment and federal student loan consolidation is free to do on your own through the Department of Education.
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