Five Ways Consolidating Student Loans Can Save You Money
By Chris Studer
Most students take out numerous loans for college, each with its own interest rate and its own monthly amount. The plethora of different loan sources is a great benefit in terms of paying for college, but when it comes to credit rating, this long list of outstanding loans can put a serious damper on your overall score.
By consolidating student loans, your credit report will show one combined loan, usually with a much lower overall payment, which equates to a more favorable credit rating. By consolidating student loans, you most likely also benefit from a much lower payment, thus lowering your debt to income ratio.
Consolidating Student Loans Reduces Debt to Income Ratio and Increases Buying Power
Having a low debt to income ratio, or the monthly amount owed compared to the amount earned, makes an incredible impact on the amount of money you'll be able to borrow and afford for a first home or reliable transportation.
The total amount of household debt in the US last year was more than 100% of disposable income. Rising education costs have created a vicious cycle for today's graduating students. As your debt to income ratio rises, so do the interest rates of each new loan. Keeping this ratio low by reducing your monthly bills can literally save you tens of thousands of dollars over a lifetime.
Consolidating Student Loans Reduces Dependence on Credit Cards
Having lower bills in the years following college means less reliance on high interest credit cards and other loans. The average college student carries a whopping 6 credit cards with a total balance over $2100.
This means that the $100 credit card purchase for new work attire could cost more than $200 over the 12 months it takes to pay the full balance. Fortunately, smart financial planning, including consolidating education loans, can help students and young professionals live a life free of high interest debts.
By Consolidating Student Loans, You are Locked into Today's Low Fixed Rates
Just because interest rates are low today doesn't mean they will stay that way. In fact rates over the last several years are lower than they've ever been in recent history. It's amazing how much a small percentage point can save or cost on a college education bill over the course of a loan repayment.
The Federal Consolidation Loan allows you to lock into today's low interest rates when consolidating student loans. Consolidation loans usually have a longer repayment period and a lower monthly payment than is available on the underlying education loans.
By Consolidating Student Loans, you can Receive Additional Interest Rate Discounts
Companies that specialize in consolidating student loans like ScholarPoint.com offer additional consolidation benefits such as auto payments, and consecutive payments.
Auto Payments: Receive a reduction in your interest rate for making your payments automatically from your bank account when you consolidate your student loans.
Consecutive Payments: Some student loan consolidation companies give you the opportunity to reduce your repayment interest rate up to one full percentage point by simply making payments on time.
No Interest Deferral: Take advantage of the flexibility of student loans by deferring loans during qualified times. While enrolled in graduate school, serving in the military, or volunteering with the Peace Corps, you can not only defer payments, but stop interest from accruing as well.
Grace Period: Consolidating during your grace period allows you to lock in a rate that is lower than the standard repayment rate.
About The Author
ScholarPoint Financial, Inc. is a national online consumer lending company specializing in student loans. We believe in combining state-of-the-art technology with world class service to help students and parents easily gain access to data, become informed, and enjoy the process of obtaining a college loan.
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