5 Best Banks to Refinance and Consolidate Student Loans in 2020

Andy Josuweit

Andrew Josuweit Updated May 15, 2020

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Andy Josuweit

Andrew Josuweit Updated May 15, 2020


The situation for student loans has drastically changed due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, the government has suspended all federal student loan payments and halted all interest charges until the end of September.

As as result, Student Loan Hero recommends being very cautious as you consider refinancing your federal student loans, since you would no longer qualify for the payment suspension and other benefits. On the other hand, it may well be worth refinancing private student loans, now that interest rates have dropped to historically low levels — take a look at the information below and reach out to some of the lenders you’re interested in for more details.

In the meantime, you can visit the Student Loan Hero Coronavirus Information Center for new developments on how the crisis affects your student loans. Stay healthy and safe!

*            *            *

If you’re ready to refinance your student loans, your search for your best lender is finally over.

We compared banks and lenders across the country to find ones with the best terms for student loan borrowers. The five below could help you refinance and consolidate both private and federal student loans. With this move, you could snag a lower interest rate, decrease your monthly payment, or both.

You might even get out of student loan debt ahead of schedule.

To qualify for refinancing, you’ll need to meet requirements for credit score, annual income, savings, and college degree (or certificate of enrollment if you’re still in school). If you can’t yet qualify on your own, you could apply with a creditworthy cosigner to improve your chances.

Ready to take control of your student loans? Here are our top recommendations for student loan refinancing and consolidation.


Our top 5 picks for Student Loan Refinancing

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.

Variable-rate student loans have interest rates that can change during the repayment period. Interest rates may increase or decrease at any time and typically do so based on changes to LIBOR. Often, the introductory rate on a variable-rate loan is lower than that of a fixed rate loan, though it has the potential to increase later. Learn more
Variable APR
Our partners refinance both private and federal student loans. Both types of loans can be consolidated to create a single payment.
Loan Types
"Term" refers to the length of the loan, typically in years. In general, the shorter the term, the lower the interest rate and the higher the monthly payments. Longer terms will typically result in lower monthly payments but at a higher interest rate. Borrowers may select any term offered by a lender regardless of the current loan term. Learn more
Terms
Our partners refinance student loans from both undergraduate and graduate degrees.
Eligible Degrees
Our partners refinance both private and federal student loans. Both types of loans can be consolidated to create a single payment.
Eligible Loans
 
1.99% to 6.65%
Variable & Fixed5, 7, 10, 15, 20
Years
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal

Visit Laurel Road

1.99% to 7.10%
Variable & Fixed5 to 25
Years
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal

Visit Splash

3.21% to 6.67%
Variable & Fixed5, 7, 10, 15, 20
Years
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal

Visit SoFi

3.21% to 6.67%
Variable & Fixed5 to 20
Years
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal

Visit Earnest

3.22% to 6.25%
Variable & Fixed5, 7, 10, 15, 20
Years
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal

Visit CommonBond

DID YOU KNOW CHECKING YOUR RATE DOESN’T AFFECT YOUR CREDIT SCORE?

Our top 5 picks for Student Loan Refinancing

1.99% – 7.02%1.99% – 6.65%3.50% – 7.02%5, 7, 10, 15, 20
Years
$5k$300000Yes0.25%
(up to 12 months)
NoneNone
Any
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal660No min
Yes(or signed job offer)No min< 3 minutes< 5 minutes
No2006

Visit Laurel Road

1.99% – 7.27%1.99% – 7.10%2.88% – 7.27%5 to 25
Years
$5kNoneYes0.25% for the medical resident/fellow product.
up to 1 year
Yes, for Resident/Fellow product. No – General refi product.
NoneNone
Any
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal700 for solo applicants, 660 with a cosigner.None
Yes(or signed job offer)No min2 minutes10 - 15 minutes
No2014

Visit Splash

3.21% – 6.67%3.21% – 6.67%3.49% – 6.67%5, 7, 10, 15, 20
Years
$5kNo MaxYes0.25%
(up to 12 months)
NoneNone
Any
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & FederalGood or Excellent score neededNo min
(or signed job offer)No min< 3 minutes< 10 minutes
No2011

Visit SoFi

3.21% – 6.67%3.21% – 6.67%3.21% – 6.67%5 to 20
Years
$5kNo MaxYes0.25%
(up to 12 months)
NoneNone
Any except AL, DE, KY, MS, NV, RI
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal650No min
Yes(or signed job offer)No min< 3 minutes< 10 minutes
No2013

Visit Earnest

3.22% – 6.45%3.22% – 6.25%3.22% – 6.45%5, 7, 10, 15, 20
Years
$5k$500kYes0.25%
(up to 24 months)
NoneNone
Any except ID, LA, MS, NV, SD or VT
Undergrad
& Graduate
Private & Federal660No min
Yes(or signed job offer)No min< 3 minutes< 10 minutes
No2011

Visit CommonBond

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  • APR Range
  • Variable APR
  • Fixed APR
  • Terms
  • Soft Credit Check
  • Min. Lending Amount
  • Max. Lending Amount
  • Auto-Pay Interest Rate Reduction
  • Unemployment Protection/Benefits
  • Interest-Only Payment Option
  • Discharge Due to Death
  • Transfer Parent PLUS From Parent to Child/Graduate
  • Origination Fees
  • Prepayment Penalty
  • Refi Parent PLUS Loans
  • State Residency
  • Previously Defaulted (Now Rehabilitated) Loans Eligible
  • Eligible Degrees
  • Eligible Loans
  • Min. Credit Score
  • Min. Annual Income
  • No Cosigner Required
  • Ability to Apply With a Cosigner
  • Cosigner Release Offered (Existing Loans)
  • Cosigner Release Offered (Refinanced Loans)
  • Borrower Can Be Delinquent on Current Student Loans
  • Borrower Can Apply While Still Enrolled in School
  • Borrower Must Currently Be Employed
  • Minimum GPA Required
  • Avg. Time to Check Rate
  • Avg. Time to Apply
  • Apply on Mobile Device
  • Interest Is Tax Deductible
  • Personal Reference Required
  • Year Established
Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality. We sometimes earn a sales commission or advertising fee when recommending various products and services to you. Similar to when you are being sold any product or service, be sure to read the fine print to help you understand what you are buying. Be sure to consult with a licensed professional if you have any concerns. Student Loan Hero is not a lender or investment advisor. We are not involved in the loan approval or investment process, nor do we make credit or investment related decisions. The rates and terms listed on our website are estimates and are subject to change at any time.



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Laurel Road Disclosures

Laurel Road is a brand of KeyBank National Association offering online lending products in all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico. Mortgage lending is not offered in Puerto Rico. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association.
As used throughout these Terms & Conditions, the term “Lender” refers to KeyBank National Association and its affiliates, agents, guaranty insurers, investors, assigns, and successors in interest.

ANNUAL PERCENTAGE RATE (“APR”)
This term represents the actual cost of financing to the borrower over the life of the loan expressed as a yearly rate.

FEE INFORMATION

There are no origination fees or prepayment penalties associated with the loan. Lender may assess a late fee if any part of a payment is not received within 15 days of the payment due date. Any late fee assessed shall not exceed 5% of the late payment or $28, whichever is less. A borrower may be charged $20 for any payment (including a check or an electronic payment) that is returned unpaid due to non-sufficient funds (NSF) or a closed account.

LOAN AMOUNT

For bachelor’s degrees and higher, up to 100% of outstanding private and federal student loans (minimum $5,000) are eligible for refinancing. If you are refinancing greater than $300,000 in student loan debt, Lender may refinance the loans into 2 or more new loans.
For eligible Associates degrees in the healthcare field (see Eligibility & Eligible Loans section below), Lender will refinance up to $50,000 in loans for non-ParentPlus refinance loans. Note, parents who are refinancing loans taken out on behalf of a child who has obtained an associates degrees in an eligible healthcare field are not subject to the $50,000 loan maximum, refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for more information about refinancing ParentPlus loans.

ELIGIBILITY & ELIGIBLE LOANS

Borrower, and Co-signer if applicable, must be a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident with a valid I-551 card (which must show a minimum of 10 years between “Resident Since” date and “Card Expires” date or has no expiration date); state that they are of at least borrowing age in the state of residence at the time of application; and meet Lender underwriting criteria (including, for example, employment, debt-to-income, disposable income, and credit history requirements).

Graduates may refinance any unsubsidized or subsidized Federal or private student loan that was used exclusively for qualified higher education expenses (as defined in 26 USC Section 221) at an accredited U.S. undergraduate or graduate school. Any federal loans refinanced with Lender are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that federal loan program offers such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment.

All loans must be in grace or repayment status and cannot be in default. Borrower must have graduated or be enrolled in good standing in the final term preceding graduation from an accredited Title IV U.S. school and must be employed, or have an eligible offer of employment. Parents looking to refinance loans taken out on behalf of a child should refer to https://www.laurelroad.com/refinance-student-loans/refinance-parent-plus-loans/ for applicable terms and conditions.

For Associates Degrees: Only associates degrees earned in one of the following are eligible for refinancing: Cardiovascular Technologist (CVT); Dental Hygiene; Diagnostic Medical Sonography; EMT/Paramedics; Nuclear Technician; Nursing; Occupational Therapy Assistant; Pharmacy Technician; Physical Therapy Assistant; Radiation Therapy; Radiologic/MRI Technologist; Respiratory Therapy; or Surgical Technologist. To refinance an Associates degree, a borrower must also either be currently enrolled and in the final term of an associate degree program at a Title IV eligible school with an offer of employment in the same field in which they will receive an eligible associate degree OR have graduated from a school that is Title IV eligible with an eligible associate and have been employed, for a minimum of 12 months, in the same field of study of the associate degree earned.

INTEREST RATES

The interest rate you are offered will depend on your credit profile, income, and total debt payments as well as your choice of fixed or variable and choice of term. For applicants who are currently medical or dental residents, your rate offer may also vary depending on whether you have secured employment for after residency.

DISBURSEMENT OPTIONS

The repayment of any refinanced student loan will commence (1) immediately after disbursement by us, or (2) after any grace or in-school deferment period, existing prior to refinancing and/or consolidation with us, has expired.

POSTPONING OR REDUCING PAYMENTS

After loan disbursement, if a borrower documents a qualifying economic hardship, we may agree in our discretion to allow for full or partial forbearance of payments for one or more 3-month time periods (not to exceed 12 months in the aggregate during the term of your loan), provided that we receive acceptable documentation (including updating documentation) of the nature and expected duration of the borrower’s economic hardship.

We may agree under certain circumstances to allow a borrower to make $100/month payments for a period of time immediately after loan disbursement if the borrower is employed full-time as an intern, resident, or similar postgraduate trainee at the time of loan disbursement. These payments may not be enough to cover all of the interest that accrues on the loan. Unpaid accrued interest will be added to your loan and monthly payments of principal and interest will begin when the post-graduate training program ends.

We may agree under certain circumstances to allow postponement (deferral) of monthly payments of principal and interest for a period of time immediately following loan disbursement (not to exceed 6 months after the borrower’s graduation with an eligible degree), if the borrower is an eligible student in the borrower’s final term at the time of loan disbursement or graduated less than 6 months before loan disbursement, and has accepted an offer of (or has already begun) full-time employment.

If Lender agrees (in its sole discretion) to postpone or reduce any monthly payment(s) for a period of time, interest on the loan will continue to accrue for each day principal is owed. Although the borrower might not be required to make payments during such a period, the borrower may continue to make payments during such a period. Making payments, or paying some of the interest, will reduce the total amount that will be required to be paid over the life of the loan. Interest not paid during any period when Lender has agreed to postpone or reduce any monthly payment will be added to the principal balance through capitalization (compounding) at the end of such a period, one month before the borrower is required to resume making regular monthly payments.

KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.

This information is current as of March 4, 2020 and is subject to change.

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Bethany Whittier, DDS – Dentist

I will save over $20,000!

Refinancing my student loans through Laurel Road is the best thing that could have happened. Throughout the lifetime of my loan I will save over $20,000!

— Bethany Whittier, DDS – Dentist

Dr. Bryce Peterson – Medical Doctor

The customer service was very efficient!

I have refinanced other loans, but never as easily as with Laurel Road. The online services they offered made this refi a snap, and their rates were lower than other banks, too. The customer service through email and telephone was also very efficient.

— Dr. Bryce Peterson – Medical Doctor

Dr. Chandy Randall – Medical Doctor

The interest rate was great!

Applying to refinance my loan with Laurel Road was so easy! I only needed to collect a few documents and upload them to the website. The documents were reviewed and accepted quickly. The communication was easy. The interest rate was great! I am very happy that I decided to refinance with Laurel Road!

— Dr. Chandy Randall – Medical Doctor

Bethany Hammons – Registered Nurse

I would recommend them to anyone!

After spending weeks communicating with other companies I had about given up on refinancing my loans. I decided to give one more company a try. Laurel Road (formerly DRB Student Loan) was such an easy online process I almost didn’t believe. I would recommend them to anyone. Student loans are stressful so it’s so nice knowing there’s a company out there to make the process as pain free as possible!

— Bethany Hammons – Registered Nurse

Brandi Brock – Finance Manager

Fast and easy!

Working with Laurel Road was fast and easy! I searched for the right refinance company, and no one had better rates or service. I would recommend refinancing with Laurel Road to any of my friends with student loan debt to consolidate!

— Brandi Brock – Finance Manager

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View Disclosures

Splash Financial Disclosures

Splash Financial loans are available through arrangements with lending partners. Your loan application will be submitted to the lending partner and be evaluated at their sole discretion. For loans where a credit union is the lender, or a purchaser of the loan, in order to refinance your loans, you will need to become a credit union member.

The Splash Student Loan Refinance Program is not offered or endorsed by any college or university. Neither Splash Financial nor the lending partner are affiliated with or endorse any college or university listed on this website.

You should review the benefits of your federal student loan; it may offer specific benefits that a private refinance/consolidation loan may not offer. If you work in the public sector, are in the military or taking advantage of a federal department of relief program, such as income based repayment or public service forgiveness, you may not want to refinance, as these benefits do not transfer to private refinance/consolidation loans.

Splash Financial and our lending partners reserve the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen and meet our lending partner’s underwriting requirements. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. This information is current as of May 1, 2020.

Fixed APR: Annual Percentage Rate [APR] is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Fixed Rate options range from 2.88% (without autopay) to 7.27% (without autopay) and will vary based on application terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. Rates are subject to change without notice. Fixed rate options without an autopay discount consist of a range from 2.88% per year to 6.21% per year for a 5-year term, 3.40% per year to 6.25% per year for a 7-year term, 3.45% to 5.08% for a 8-year term, 3.89% per year to 6.65% per year for a 10-year term, 4.18% per year to 5.11% per year for a 12-year term, 4.20% per year to 7.05% per year for a 15-year term, or 4.51% per year to 7.27% per year for a 20-year term, with no origination fees. The fixed interest rate will apply until the loan is paid in full (whether before or after default, and whether before or after the scheduled maturity date of the loan).
The Rate will not change during the term. Repayment examples are for illustrative purposes only. The following Fixed Rate examples are based on a $10,000 loan amount using the lowest APR for each application term listed above. All student loan rates used in calculating the examples are shown without the autopay discount (.25%). There are no application or origination fees, and no prepayment penalties. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 2.88% per year for a 5-year term would be $179.15. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 3.40% for a 7-year term would be $134.17. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 3.45% for a 8-year term would be $119.35. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 with an APR of 3.89% for a 10-year term would be $100.72. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 with an APR of 4.18% for a 12-year term would be $88.43. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 4.20% for a 15-year term would be $74.98. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 4.51% for a 20-year term would be from $63.32.

Variable APR: Annual Percentage Rate [APR] is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Variable rate options range from 1.99% (with autopay) to 7.10% (without autopay) and will vary based on application terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. Our lowest rate option is shown with a 0.25% autopay discount. Our highest rate option does not include an autopay discount. The variable rates are based on the Variable rate index, is based on the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) published in The Wall Street Journal on the twenty-fifth day, or the next business day, of the preceding calendar month. As of April 27, 2020, the one-month LIBOR rate is 0.43763%. The interest rate on a variable rate loan is comprised of an index and margin added together. The margin is a fixed amount (disclosed at the time of your loan application) added each month to the index to determine the next month’s variable rate. Variable rate options without an autopay discount consist of a range from 2.01% per year to 6.30% per year for a 5-year term, 4.00% per year to 6.35% per year for a 7-year term, 2.09% per year to 3.92% per year for a 8-year term, 4.25% per year to 6.40% per year for a 10-year term, 2.67% per year to 4.56% per year for a 12-year term, 3.44% per year to 6.65% per year for a 15-year term, 4.75% per year to 6.93% per year for a 20-year term, or 5.14% per year to 7.10% for a 25-year term, with no origination fees. APR is subject to increase after consummation. Variable interest rates will fluctuate over the term of the borrower’s loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a co-signer. The maximum variable rate may be between 9.00% and 16.00%, depending on loan term. The floor rate may be between 0.54% and 4.21%, depending on loan term. These rates are subject to additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. Such changes will only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change.
Variable APRs and amounts subject to increase or decrease. Variable rates are indexed to the one-month LIBOR rate. The following Variable Rate examples are based on a $10,000 loan amount. Repayment examples are for illustrative purposes only. All student loan rates below are shown without the autopay discount (.25%). There are no application or origination fees, and no prepayment penalties. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 2.01% per year for a 5-year term would be $175.32. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 4.00% for a 7-year term would be $136.69. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 2.09% for a 8-year term would be $113.21. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 with an APR of 4.25% for a 10-year term would be $102.44. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 with an APR of 2.67% for a 12-year term would be $81.24. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 3.44% for a 15-year term would be $71.19. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 4.75% for a 20-year term would be from $64.62. The monthly payment for a sample $10,000 loan with an APR of 5.14% for a 25-year term would be from $59.28.

 

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Love Splash Financial

It was so easy to sign up! Good communication throughout. And they were able to save me a lot of money. I highly recommend Splash Financial

— Roy Browning

Easy to use, fast turn around, hands down the best loan experience I’ve ever had.

— Elliot Davis

Splash was great to work with and helped save me a lot of money. The team was very responsive and went above and beyond. I would highly recommend.

— Erin Newton

This was an easy to use application process and I am so happy with the result. I've reduced my stress and feel like I'm finally able to take charge!

— Olivia G

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View Disclosures

SoFi Disclosures

  1. Student loan Refinance: Fixed rates from 3.49% APR to 6.67% APR (with AutoPay). Variable rates from 3.21% APR to 6.67% APR (with AutoPay). Interest rates on variable rate loans are capped at either 8.95% or 9.95% depending on term of loanSee APR examples and terms. Lowest variable rate of 3.21% APR assumes current 1 month LIBOR rate of 0.45% plus 2.82% margin minus 0.25% ACH discount. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. If approved for a loan, the fixed or variable interest rate offered will depend on your creditworthiness, and the term of the loan and other factors, and will be within the ranges of rates listed above. For the SoFi variable rate loan, the 1-month LIBOR index will adjust monthly and the loan payment will be re-amortized and may change monthly. APRs for variable rate loans may increase after origination if the LIBOR index increases. See eligibility details. The SoFi 0.25% AutoPay interest rate reduction requires you to agree to make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic monthly deduction from a savings or checking account. The benefit will discontinue and be lost for periods in which you do not pay by automatic deduction from a savings or checking account. *To check the rates and terms you qualify for, SoFi conducts a soft credit inquiry. Unlike hard credit inquiries, soft credit inquiries (or soft credit pulls) do not impact your credit score. Soft credit inquiries allow SoFi to show you what rates and terms SoFi can offer you up front. After seeing your rates, if you choose a product and continue your application, we will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit inquiry. Hard credit inquiries (or hard credit pulls) are required for SoFi to be able to issue you a loan. In addition to requiring your explicit permission, these credit pulls may impact your credit score. Terms and Conditions Apply. SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE. 

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Chiara McPhee – Stanford

Lowest rates without a cosigner!

I was looking for the lowest rates I could find without a cosigner. SoFi was by far the best.

— Chiara McPhee – Stanford

Ali Kahn – Ross University

Tens of thousands saved!

It's almost mind-boggling how much money I'll save through refinancing my student loans with SoFi - I'd literally be paying tens of thousands more with my original loans. Now that I’ve refinanced my student loans with SoFi, I see a light at the end of the tunnel. I’m able to put away a little bit more, think about long term goals, save for a house - and I know this burden isn’t going to be over my head for the rest of my life.

— Ali Kahn – Ross University

Barry Malinowski Jr. – Harvard

Significantly lower rate!

With SoFi, I was able to significantly lower my rate, saving me thousands of dollars over the life of the loan. Plus, now I belong to a support group of borrowers and lenders, turning debt that was once only a liability into an assets of sorts. I’m grateful that a friend told me about SoFi.

— Barry Malinowski Jr. – Harvard

Taryn B. – New York

Amazing customer service!

Not only does SoFi provide low interest rates, but they have a seamless process, a tech savvy website and amazing customer service. They actually make me feel good about borrowing money from them.

— Taryn B. – New York

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Earnest Disclosures

To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.

Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.21% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.67% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 3.21% APR (with Auto Pay) to 6.67% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of May 22, 2020, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.

Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.

The information provided on this page is updated as of 5/022/2020. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at [email protected], or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.

© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.

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Sara Hathaway – UBC

Not just another statistic

These are real people who actually care about my needs as a person; I'm not just another statistic to them, I'm a relationship.

— Sara Hathaway – UBC

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CommonBond Disclosures

Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown. All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 0.8100000000000002% effective April 10, 2020.

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Chan – Binghamton, NY

Very easy application!

It was very easy to go through the CommonBond website and apply for the loan.

— Chan – Binghamton, NY

Grace – Detroit, MI

Tailored, one on one service

Looking at the math and the rates, it was an easy choice for me. It's just a very personal, tailored, one on one service.

— Grace – Detroit, MI

Andrew – Grand Forks, ND

Save Thousands of Dollars

I am going to save thousands of dollars and some portion of that is going to help other people involved in education right now.

— Andrew – Grand Forks, ND

Mariana – Lansing, MI

How could I live without this?

You know that moment when you find out about something you didn't know existed, and you think how could I ever live without this?

— Mariana – Lansing, MI

Dan M – San Francisco, CA

Very innovative

It's a very innovative approach to student financing.

— Dan M – San Francisco, CA

Tom – Seekonk, MA

Commitment to financial literacy

Their committment to financial literacy education is also very important.

— Tom – Seekonk, MA

Dan S – East Hampton, CT

Support a great organization

It's an opportunity to support an organization with a really great message about the community and people.

— Dan S – East Hampton, CT

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Recap: The Top 5 Student Loan Refinancing Companies

  • Laurel Road
  • Splash Financial
  • SoFi
  • Earnest
  • CommonBond

Refinancing has some big potential benefits, including the possibility of lowering your interest rate to save you money on accruing interest. Alternatively, it might reduce your payments to a more affordable level, if you’re willing to shell out more interest over time. A student loan refinancing calculator can calculate your potential savings (or cost).

Aside from speeding up or slowing down your repayment, refinancing accomplishes the same feats for every borrower — putting the power back in your hands. It allows you to choose your new lender, consolidate your federal and private loan debt into one monthly payment and possibly release your original loan cosigner/s.

To qualify for refinancing, you’ll need a strong credit score and steady income, among other criteria. Banks, credit unions and online lenders offer their lowest fixed and variable rates to the most creditworthy applicants.

Lenders may perform a soft credit check a quoted rate within minutes. Your credit report wouldn’t be affected until the hard check of your formal loan application. We recommend pre-qualifying with multiple lenders that meet your unique needs to see whose overall loan offering is best.

Of all the questions to ask before refinancing, this one might be most paramount: Should you refinance federal loans and lose the exclusive benefits they come with? Keep in mind that refinancing is irreversible and strips your government debt of safeguards like income-driven repayment options and access to loan forgiveness and cancellation.

If these benefits could prove useful down the road, you could be better off transitioning some or all of your original federal loans into a Direct Consolidation Loan, combining your federal loans into a single monthly payment. You could even choose a new loan servicer if you’re unhappy with your current one.

Unlike private refinancing, however, federal consolidation won’t lower your overall interest rate or let you lump any private loans into your newly consolidated debt. Also, consolidating could reset your progress in programs like Public Service Loan Forgiveness. These are just some the reasons consolidation could be a bad idea.

Moving your loans to a private lender or grouping your government debt with a new federal loan servicer could be the turning point of your repayment. If you’re unsure which route to take, consider scenarios when refinancing makes sense or whether consolidation would be wise in your case. In the end, the best decision is the one that’s best for you.


Frequently Asked Questions About Refinancing

What is student loan refinancing?

When you refinance student loans, you take out a new loan from a private lender to pay off one or more of your old loans. If you qualify, you could snag a lower interest rate on this new loan. You can also choose new repayment terms to pay off your debt faster or lower your monthly bills.

Eligible borrowers can refinance student loans to achieve a number of objectives, such as:

  • Saving money on interest with a lower rate
  • Adjusting your monthly payments to match your goals
  • Combining multiple loans into one, simple repayment
  • Removing a cosigner from your debt
  • Switching to a new loan servicer with better customer service

Whatever your goals, refinancing can be a savvy strategy for managing your student loan debt.

Are there any downsides to refinancing student loans?

Refinancing federal student loans means you turn them private. As a result, you lose access to federal programs, such as income-driven repayment and Public Service Loan Forgiveness. Some private lenders offer help if you run into financial hardship, but this varies by lender. If you’re relying on federal protections, then you should not refinance your federal student loans. But if you’re comfortable sacrificing these programs, refinancing could be a smart strategy for paying off your loans.

What’s the difference between private refinancing and federal consolidation?

Although refinancing can simplify your debt by combining multiple loans into one, it’s different from federal student loan consolidation. You refinance student loans with a private lender, but you consolidate loans by taking out a direct consolidation loan from the federal government.

Federal consolidation combines federal student loans into one new loan, and it lets you choose new repayment terms. But it doesn’t lower your interest rate, so you won’t save money on interest — only student loan refinancing helps you lower your rate, if you qualify.

How do I refinance my student loans?

Many lenders offer student loan refinancing, from traditional banks, to credit unions to online lenders. Before choosing one, shop around and compare your offers. Several lenders make it easy to get an instant rate quote online with no impact on your credit score. By checking your rates with a variety of providers, you can find a refinanced student loan with the best possible terms.

Am I eligible for student loan refinancing?

You can refinance one or more federal and/or private student loans, but you must meet a lender’s requirements for credit and income. Most lenders look for a credit score of 650 or higher, along with a steady source of income or an offer of employment. If you can’t meet these criteria on your own, you could qualify by applying with a creditworthy cosigner, such as a parent.

Along with your credit score and annual income, some lenders also look at your savings and debt-to-income ratio. Finally, some lenders require proof of graduation, as they’ll only approve borrowers who have obtained their degree. If you left school before graduating, there are relatively few student loan refinance providers that will work with you.