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Consolidating your student loans has its advantages and disadvantages. Although consolidating your student loan debt can reduce your monthly payments and eliminate multiple payments to multiple lenders, it does come at a price. Extending your repayment term means you will be paying more money over time in interest, even if you have a lower interest rate than the rates on your student loans. Whether you have federal or private student loans, or both, it is important to consider all available options for student loan consolidation before making a final decision and signing a loan agreement.

LendKey offers student loan consolidation through its cuGrad services, which also include loan refinancing options.

Federal Student Loans

Federal student loans cannot be included in cuGrad student loan consolidation, although private student loans can be included. If you are looking to consolidate your federal student loans, you will want to reference the Department of Education website for federal student loan consolidation information.

Refinancing a Federal Student Loan

LendKey does offer refinancing options for federal student loans. Refinancing is different than consolidation. Student loan refinancing allows borrowers to apply for a new loan with new rates that will transfer the balance of the existing student loan debt. In most cases, refinancing a student loan is only beneficial if you have an extremely high credit score. If you don’t have a high score, chances are you will not get a lower interest rate for your refinancing.

There are some advantages to refinancing your federal student loans, particularly if you can get a lower interest rate than what you are currently being charged.  You can apply for refinancing with a co-signer, which may reduce your interest rate if you don’t have the best credit score. There are no fees for refinancing, and there are a variety of repayment options.

Private Student Loans

The cuGrad program does offer student loan consolidation for private student loans. The consolidation loans offered have extremely competitive interest rates, so it is a good option to consider. The annual percentage rate (APR) ranges between 3.98% and 8.14%, which are extremely low compared to most other lenders. The APR is variable, and may increase or decrease throughout the loan term.

If you are looking for different options to reduce your student loan payments, cuGrad through LendKey does offer competitive services that may be beneficial to your financial situation. As with any loan or consolidation, be sure to understand the details of the agreement before you sign.