Private Student Loan Rates March 28, 2024 – Loan Rate Hike

The rising expense of education is a big concern for students in the United States. With federal student loan rates shifting and recent increases, many students are turning to private lenders to fill the financing gap for their education.

However, navigating the world of private student loans may be difficult, especially given the current loan rate increase. This page intends to be your one-stop shop for a thorough review of private student loan rates on March 28, 2024, including fixed and variable rates, shopping suggestions, and applications.

Loan Rates:

Fixed-Rate Loans

A 10-year loan’s average fixed rate increased by 1.27% to 8.77% last week. The previous week’s average was 7.50%.

Compared to this time last year, borrowers who are currently looking for a private student loan will be charged a higher rate. The average fixed rate for a 10-year loan at this time last year was 7.15%, which is 1.62% less than the rate at this time.

Current Fixed Rates (as of March 28, 2024):

  • Undergraduates: 4.43% – 13.99% APR
  • Graduates: 5.25% – 14.99% APR
  • Parent PLUS Loans: 6.78% – 15.99% APR

Variable-Rate Loans

The average rate on five-year variable student loans increased by 0.25% last week. Now it stands at 9.54%.

Borrowers frequently have the option of choosing between fixed and variable interest rates when dealing with private lenders. Fixed rates may be a safer pick for the average student, but if your income is consistent and you intend to repay your loan fast, a variable loan may be more advantageous.

Assume you financed a $20,000 five-year loan at a variable interest rate of 9.54%. You’d pay an average of $420 every month. You’d pay about $5,226 in total interest over the course of the loan. Keep in mind that because interest is changeable, it may rise or fall from month to month.

Current Variable Rates (as of March 28, 2024):

  • Undergraduates: 3.75% – 12.49% APR (Starting Rate)
  • Graduates: 4.50% – 13.49% APR (Starting Rate)
  • Parent PLUS Loans: 5.28% – 14.49% APR (Starting Rate)

Shopping for Private Student Loans

Experts often advise not borrowing more than you will earn in your first year out of college. While some lenders limit the amount of money you can borrow annually, others do not. When comparing loans, consider how the loan will be disbursed and what charges are covered.

Remember that people with strong or excellent credit tend to get the best prices.

Check: Average Student Loan Debt per State (2024)

Apply for a Private Student Loan

Private student loans may be a smart option if you exceed the annual borrowing restrictions for federal student loans or are otherwise disqualified for them. A federal student loan should be your first choice because interest rates are often lower and you will have more flexible repayment and forgiveness possibilities than with a private loan.

If you are an undergraduate with a minimal credit history, you will most likely need to apply with a co-signer who can meet the lender’s borrowing restrictions.

When applying for a private student loan, consider the following points:

  • Make sure you fit the requirements. Private student loans are credit-based, and most lenders require a credit score in the high 600s. This is why having a co-signer can be quite useful.
  • Apply directly with lenders. You can apply on the lender’s website, by mail, or over the phone.
  • Compare your alternatives. Examine each lender’s options and evaluate the interest rate, length, projected monthly payment, origination fee, and late fee. Also, verify if the lender provides a co-signer release so that the co-borrower can finally get out of the debt.

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