Refinance Your Student Loans
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If your student loan payments were on pause during the pandemic, get ready to start making payments again. For eligible loans, the CARES Act paused student loan payments, set interests at 0%, and temporarily stopped collections on defaulted student loans. When student loan forbearance under the CARES Act ends, federal student loan payments will resume for millions of student loan borrowers. Be sure to check the Federal Student Aid website for accurate information on when to anticipate your student loan payments to resume.
Here’s what you should know about your options before your student loan payments resume.
Review Your Student Loans
Take steps now to ensure you stay on track with student loan repayment:
Update contact information. Keep your address up to date with your loan servicer and on your StudentAid.gov profile. Read your mail or emails carefully so you don’t miss important information about your student loans.
Look up your loan servicer. Your student loan servicer is a contractor responsible for handling the billing and loan repayment process. The company servicing your loan may change, and you may have multiple loan servicers over the life of the loan. To find out who your loan servicer is for federal student loans, visit your account dashboard at StudentAid.gov and scroll down to “My Loan Servicers” section or contact the Federal Student Aid Information Center (FSAIC) at 1-800-433-3243.
Confirm your bank account information. If your student loan payments were on autopayment before the forbearance period, you may need to confirm your enrollment in autopay. Contact your loan servicers, make sure your bank information is correct, and confirm your preference to resume automatic payments.
Review your financial situation. Find out how much you’ll be required to pay on your student loans each month. If you think you’ll have difficulty keeping up with payments, contact your loan servicer to discuss your options.
Reduce Your Student Loan Payments
If the burden of student loans is weighing you down, look for ways to get your debt under control.
Explore options to reduce payments. Depending on your situation, you may be able to defer your loan payments or lower your payments with an income-driven repayment plan based on your income and family size. Keep in mind that if you extend or defer payments, you’ll end up paying more in interest in the long run.
Consider refinancing your student loans. Find out whether you can refinance to a lower rate or extended repayment period. If you have multiple loans, consolidating them can make it easier to manage the debt with one loan and one lender. Student loan refinancing may lower your monthly payment and ease the strain on your budget.
At DCU, we have the tools to help you stay on track as you prepare to resume your student loan payments. Take control of your student debt and apply for a student loan refinance online today.
It’s important to remember that every student loan situation is unique. There are many factors to consider when refinancing student loans, including a possible loss of loan benefits and protections for any federal student loans you currently hold.
The CARES Act was passed in response to events related to the COVID-19 pandemic and includes broad relief measures, including certain measures for federal student loan borrowers. If you are considering refinancing your federal student loans, please make sure to review these measures at www.studentaid.gov/coronavirus to understand your options.
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This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to serve as legal, financial, investment, or tax advice, or indicate that a specific DCU product or service is right for you. For specific advice about your unique circumstances, you may wish to consult a financial professional.