Student Loans Website is a central data repository for information about federal student aid. It allows users to access their financial aid history, submit a variety of forms and learn about repayment options.
The Biden administration has opened the application process for people who want their student debt forgiven. The site will go through scheduled beta pauses as the technical team assesses how well it’s working.
What is a student loan?
A student loan is money borrowed by students to pay for college. These loans are usually required to be paid back with interest over time. It is important for students to understand their responsibilities as borrowers. Students should only borrow the amount they need to cover their school costs, and should consider how their future wages will impact their ability to repay student loans.
There are two types of student loans: Federal Student Loans and Private Student Loans. Both types offer different benefits and features, but Federal Student Loans typically have lower interest rates and more flexible repayment options than Private Student Loans.
Student loans can be taken out by both undergraduate and graduate students. Federal Student Loans can be subsidized or unsubsidized and can be used to pay for any eligible school-related expenses. Students with a demonstrated financial need can apply for Direct Subsidized Loans, which allow the government to pay the interest while the student is in school or during deferment periods after leaving school.
How do I apply for a student loan?
Student loans are a necessary part of many students’ college plans, but they aren’t the only solution. We encourage you to consider other options, including grants, scholarships and work-study. The best way to pay for school is by saving, using grant money and, if needed, borrowing only the smallest amount possible.
If you do need to borrow, be sure to explore your federal and private loan options. Federal loans offer low rates and important borrower protections. And, if you’re planning to take out a private loan, be sure to compare the terms and rates carefully.
At SoFi, we offer private student loans with no origination fees and competitive interest rates for new and returning borrowers. Plus, our borrowers get free 1:1 student success coaching, financial education resources and entries to monthly scholarship drawings. Get started today.
What are my options for paying back my student loan?
There are many options to pay back your student loans, both federal and private. The best option will depend on the kind of loans you have, your income, and your goals for repayment. Generally, you can choose between a standard or graduated repayment plan (for non-consolidated loans) and an income-driven repayment plan. Choosing a payment plan early and reevaluating it each year can save you money in interest charges over the life of your loans.
You can also consider consolidating your loans with a Direct Consolidation Loan, which may lower your monthly payments and help you manage debt over time. Lastly, some borrowers qualify to have some or all of their federal student loan debt forgiven, canceled or discharged under certain conditions, such as work in public service or becoming permanently disabled. The best way to find out about your options is to talk with a loan servicer. They are required to provide you with information about your options, including deferment and forbearance programs.
How do I get help paying back my student loan?
There are a few ways to get help paying back your student loan. One way is to enroll in an income-driven repayment plan. These plans tie your monthly payment to how much you make, and after a certain number of years, any remaining debt is forgiven. You can find the online application for these plans at the Department of Education’s website.
Another way to get help is to work with your employer. Many employers now offer programs that will help their employees pay down their student loans. These programs can range from simple cash assistance to reducing your interest rate or even forgiving some of your debt altogether.
Finally, you should always make sure to pay your student loan on time. Missing payments can have serious consequences including being thrown into delinquency and default. Defaulting on your student loan will have long-lasting negative impacts on your credit and may also disqualify you from student loan forgiveness or reduction programs.