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Best Private Student Loan of July 2021

College Ave offers private student loans with multiple repayment options and lets borrowers refinance at any repayment term between five and 20 years.

Maksym Rutkovskyi

Sep 9, 2021

College Ave private student loan review

College Ave Undergraduate Loan

Check rate

on College Ave website

Fixed APR

2.99% - 12.99%2

Variable APR

0.99% - 11.98%2

Min. Credit Score

High-600s

Pros

  • Choice of  how long you take to repay the loan – 5 through 20 year terms
  • .25% rate reduction when you make required payments by automatic debit
  • Cosigner release option available if half of the repayment period has passed and borrower meets a certain payment income requirement (considered a con by Nerdwallet)
  • Can check rate and qualifications without a hard credit check
  • Available six-month grace period extension

Cons

  • Does not publicly list many eligibility requirements on its website, which requires borrower or refinancers to get a quote
  • Has a maximum forbearance period of 12 months and is limited to 3 or 6 month increments

Full Review

College Ave undergraduate private student loans are best for those who want to make payments while in school; borrowers can opt for immediate, interest-only and fixed $25 payment plans. You can also defer payments until after graduation.

More than 95% of College Ave undergraduate loans have a co-signer. You must be at least halfway through your repayment term to release the co-signer from the loan, as well as meet additional criteria. For a standard 10-year repayment term, that would mean making at least 5 years of payments, which is longer than other lenders require to release a co-signer.

You could refinance the loan earlier in your repayment term instead. But that would change the terms of the existing loan and require meeting the refinance lender’s qualifications.

College Ave private student loan details

  • Interest rates, fees and terms + -

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  • Requirements + -

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  • Repayment options + -

    Flexible repayment options are available. When you pay back your student loan amount, you have to consider both the principal (the lump sum you borrow) and the interest. College Ave offers the following repayment options:

    Deferred payment: You wait to start making payments until after you finish studying. While this is easier in the present, it means you’ll have to pay more interest in the long run.

    Flat payment: Make monthly payments of a flat fee (approximately $25, although case-by-case details vary) while studying. Consistent payments will help keep accrued interest low.

    Interest-only payment: Start paying the interest while you’re still studying and save the principal repayment for later.

    Full principal and interest payment: Immediately repay your interest and principal. In the long run, this will save you the most money.

Check Rate

How does this loan compare?

Variable APR

0.99% - 11.98%2

Fixed APR

2.99% - 12.99%2

Application time

3 minutes

Hard credit check

No

Repayment length

5 to 15 years

Fees

No

Rating

4.4


Before applying for a College Ave student loan

Compare your private student loan options to make sure you’re getting the best rate you qualify for. In addition to interest rates, look at lenders’ repayment alternatives and the flexibility they offer to borrowers who struggle to make payments.

Check Rates with College Ave

Guide to Student Loans

  • What’s the difference between Federal Student Loans and Private Student Loans? + -

    Federal Student Loans are education loans made directly by the Department of Education of the U.S. Federal Government. (In fact, they’re officially called “Federal Direct Student Loans”). Federal Student Loans are very widely available, with few eligibility requirements. A co-signer is not required (or possible) for a Federal Student Loan. These loans also have competitive fixed interest rates and very flexible deferment and repayment provisions. The amount that undergraduate students can borrow is limited to a set amount based on year in school.

    Private Student Loans are loans made by private lenders. Private Student Loans have relatively stringent credit and income requirements. A co-signer with strong credit is usually required to qualify. Most Private Student Loan lenders offer fixed rate and variable rate versions. Interest rates vary, depending on the credit and income profiles of the borrower and co-signer.

  • Which is better – Federal or Private Student Loans? + -

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  • How much should I borrow? + -

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  • Do I need a co-signer for Private Student Loans? + -

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  • How do I pick the right Private Student Loan? + -

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About the author

Maksym Rutkovskyi

FullStack developer at Sigma Software