20 States Where College Is Worth the Cost

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Every prospective student wonders: Is college worth it? One reliable way to measure that is by looking at the college’s return on investment (ROI).

To do this, students can compare the cost of their degrees (investment) to how much they’re able to earn upon graduating (return). While that investment typically includes taking out student loans — meaning you would graduate with debt — don’t fret too much. A recent study from Student Loan Hero revealed that, generally, a college degree still pays off for most students.

But the exact value of a college degree as an investment — and the return of a higher salary — vary depending on where you live. Here are the top 20 states where college is a solid bet, as identified by the ROI of a bachelor’s degree in each state.

Top 20 states where college pays off

Student Loan Hero calculated each state’s average return on investment of a college degree five years after graduation. This was done by finding the typical pay difference between workers in that state with a high school diploma versus a bachelor’s degree, then using state-specific college costs to calculate the ROI.

Overall, college proves to be a good bet for most students. A typical college grad will break even on college costs in about 3.7 years, and see an average pay bump of around $19,400.

What’s more, five years post-graduation, an average graduate’s ROI is just about 52 percent.

Of course, many states can yield a much better deal for college students. Here are the states in which a college degree is a smart investment, based on a five-year ROI.

1. Wyoming: 203% 5-year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $31,936
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $45,519
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $13,583

Wyoming has some of the highest wages for high school graduates: $31,936 a year, on average. This results in a 43 percent increase in pay for earning a bachelor’s degree.

College is a bargain in this state, too: A bachelor’s degree totals just $22,422 on average, the cheapest in the nation. With these low costs, a degree is a sound investment for Wyoming residents. A graduate will break even in 1.7 years, plus triple their initial investment within five years of graduating.

2. New Mexico: 151% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $25,747
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $43,257
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $17,510

New Mexico workers with only a high school diploma are among some of the lowest-paid in the nation, earning $25,747 a year on average. However, wages for New Mexico college graduates also rank among the bottom 10 states in the nation.

Earning a bachelor’s results in a respectable 68 percent pay increase. And with the third-lowest college costs in the nation, at $34,945 for a bachelor’s degree, this investment pays off in only two years.

3. Arkansas: 120% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $25,767
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $44,101
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $18,334

Average wages are also low for Arkansas’s high school grads; they earn $25,767 a year.

Yet someone with a bachelor’s degree earns an average income of $44,101 — that’s a 71 percent increase in pay.

Combine this impressive increase with low college costs of $41,629 for a four-year degree, and it takes just 2.3 years for the average grad to break even.

4. Texas: 114% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $27,232
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $51,701
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $24,469

In Texas, earning a bachelor’s degree will generate an average pay increase of 90 percent — the third-highest in the nation.

This steep increase in pay means that college pays off for Texas residents. While that $57,121 price tag for a bachelor’s degree may be steep, college grads will break even in 2.3 years.

5. Georgia: 105% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $26,350
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $49,989
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $23,639

Workers in Georgia who attain a bachelor’s degree earn 90 percent more than those with just a high school diploma. This means attending college can nearly double pay for most residents in this state.

Combine this big pay boost with lower college costs, and grads can quickly earn back the investment of a college degree in 2.4 years.

6. Arizona: 102% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $26,898
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $48,159
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $21,261

A typical Arizona resident will break even on college costs in only 2.5 years. That’s thanks to the low costs of a bachelor’s degree, at $52,524. It also reflects a higher local pay difference of 79 percent from high school to college levels of educational attainment.

7. California: 102% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $27,963
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $56,010
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $28,047

California’s jump in pay from a high school to an undergraduate diploma is the second-highest among the top 20 states listed in this study. The average pay for workers with bachelor’s degrees is, in fact, more than double what high school graduates earn in this state.

At 102 percent, that’s the biggest pay increase for earning a bachelor’s degree in any state. That helps college graduates earn back the investment of a degree in 2.5 years.

8. Alabama: 96% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $26,132
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $46,434
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $20,302

The pay levels for Alabama college graduates are about 78 percent higher than high school grads in this state. Thanks to this percentage, residents with bachelor’s degrees break even on the $51,732 cost of a degree in 2.6 years.

9. Alaska: 95% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $34,236
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $52,769
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $18,560

Alaska’s high school graduates are the best paid in the U.S., earning $34,236 on average.

What’s more, the average salary for a college graduate in Alaska is 54 percent higher than graduates who only hold a high school diploma, a smaller gap than in most states.

However, residents of this state receive a relatively low-cost education at $47,524 in this state, and break even in just 2.6 years.

10. Montana: 92% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $25,186
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $38,283
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $13,097

Montana has some of the lowest college costs in the country. In fact, a bachelor’s degree costs just $34,184, an investment a college grad in this state will earn back in just 2.6 years.

However, Montana is actually the lowest-paying state for college graduates. It’s also the only place where a bachelor’s degree doesn’t come with an average pay greater than $40,000 a year. Overall, a bachelor’s degree only bumps up annual pay by 52 percent.

11. New Jersey: 85% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $32,207
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $61,128
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $28,921

Among these 20 top states, New Jersey has the highest incomes for graduates with a bachelor’s and the highest dollar-for-dollar pay increase from high school diploma to a bachelor’s degree (a bump of 90 percent).

This makes college a good deal, even with the state’s higher college costs — a bachelor’s degree costs just over $78,000. But New Jersey college grads can recoup that cost in 2.7 years, thanks to the state’s higher incomes.

12. Mississippi: 84% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $25,954
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $40,952
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $14,998

Mississippi is another state in which wages start low for those with high school diplomas.

However, wages for college graduates are also among the lowest of any state ranked among the top 20. Unfortunately, that means a graduate with a bachelor’s degree will only see a pay increase of 58 percent — a pay bump that lags behind college graduates in most other states.

The low cost of college in Mississippi means college still pays off in this state. The typical college grad will break even in 2.7 years.

13. Maryland: 82% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $33,584
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $60,287
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $26,703

Maryland is the only other top 20 state (besides New Jersey) in which bachelor’s graduates earn more than $60,000 a year.

In fact, those with a high school diploma can expect an average pay increase of 80 percent after earning a bachelor’s degree. This means that with a steeper-than-average cost of a bachelor’s degree of $73,213, most graduates will break even in 2.7 years.

14. Louisiana: 81% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $28,300
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $47,115
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $18,815

In Louisiana, a bachelor’s degree typically results in a 66 percent boost in pay, putting this state near the middle of the pack in this measure. However, lower costs on college mean a typical grad needs only 2.8 years to repay the average $51,973 bachelor’s degree.

15. Washington: 80% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $31,011
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $53,802
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $22,791

Washington residents can earn a bachelor’s degree at an average cost of $63,281, and break even on this cost in 2.8 years. The higher dollar difference in average pay between the state’s high school and college grads represents a 73 percent increase for the latter.

16. Hawaii: 75% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $30,971
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $46,590
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $15,619

In Hawaii, earning a bachelor’s degree results in an average pay increase of 50 percent — one of the lowest (by percentage difference) in the nation.

However, the relatively low cost of $44,738 of a bachelor’s degree in this state makes for a smart investment. Plus, a typical college graduate will earn back the money spent on a degree in a short 2.9 years.

17. Virginia: 72% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $29,303
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $55,509
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $26,206

Earning a bachelor’s degree is an achievement worth an 89 percent pay bump in Virginia, one of the largest pay increases in the nation. These higher earnings mean the average Virginia college graduate can pay back his or her $76,000 bachelor’s degree in 2.9 years.

18. North Carolina: 71% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $26,059
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $45,377
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $19,318

College costs are lower than average among North Carolina colleges at $56,400 for a four-year degree.

What’s more, this cost is recouped in just 2.9 years. That’s thanks to the decent jump in pay for North Carolina residents with bachelor’s degrees, who earn 74 percent more than workers with only a high school diploma.

19. North Dakota: 69% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $31,691
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $43,555
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $11,864

North Dakota has the lowest-percentage pay bump from earning a bachelor’s degree in the nation — only 37 percent. That’s largely because high school graduates earn higher wages, with North Dakota among the 10 states that pay these workers the most.

Despite having one of the smallest gaps in pay between these two educational degree levels, North Dakota residents would still benefit from the state’s low college costs. A $35,198 price tag for a bachelor’s degree is the fourth-lowest in the nation.

College graduates would break even on these costs after three years.

20. Michigan: 66% 5-Year ROI on College

  • Average high school graduate salary: $26,347
  • Average bachelor’s degree holder salary: $48,622
  • Increase in annual pay for earning a bachelor’s: $22,275

Last on the list is Michigan, a state that earns its spot thanks to the higher pay of college graduates. Michigan workers with a bachelor’s degree earn 85 percent more, on average, than those with high school diplomas.

With such a big pay bump, graduates break even on the $67,130 cost of a four-year degree in three years.

Methodology: Student Loan Hero sourced wage data by state and educational attainment from the U.S. Census Bureau.

College costs were based on data from a previous Student Loan Hero study finding the average cost of a college credit in each state, multiplied by the typical 120 credit hours required for a bachelor’s degree.

Return on investment data was calculated by finding the differences in average wages between a high school graduate and a worker with a bachelor’s degree in a given state, multiplied over five years. This was then compared to the initial cost of a bachelor’s degree in that state by calculating the five-year ROI.

RankStateHigh school graduate salaryCollege graduate salaryPay difference with college degreeCost of a Bachelor’s degree5-year ROI of a Bachelor’s degreeYears to break even on college costs
1Wyoming$31,936$45,519$13,583$22,422202.89%1.65
2New Mexico$25,747$43,257$17,510$34,945150.54%2.00
3Arkansas$25,767$44,101$18,334$41,629120.21%2.27
4Texas$27,232$51,701$24,469$57,121114.18%2.33
5Georgia$26,350$49,989$23,639$57,719104.78%2.44
6Arizona$26,898$48,159$21,261$52,524102.39%2.47
7California$27,963$56,010$28,047$69,506101.76%2.48
8Alabama$26,132$46,434$20,302$51,73296.22%2.55
9Alaska$34,236$52,769$18,533$47,52494.99%2.56
10Montana$25,186$38,283$13,097$34,18491.56%2.61
11New Jersey$32,207$61,128$28,921$78,10085.15%2.70
12Mississippi$25,954$40,952$14,998$40,65784.44%2.71
13Maryland$33,584$60,287$26,703$73,21382.36%2.74
14Louisiana$28,300$47,115$18,815$51,97381.01%2.76
15Washington$31,011$53,802$22,791$63,28180.08%2.78
16Hawaii$30,971$46,590$15,619$44,73874.56%2.86
17Virginia$29,303$55,509$26,206$75,97072.48%2.90
18North Carolina$26,059$45,377$19,318$56,41071.23%2.92
19North Dakota$31,691$43,555$11,864$35,19868.53%2.97
20Michigan$26,347$48,622$22,275$67,13065.91%3.01
21Delaware$30,981$51,156$20,175$62,07862.50%3.08
22Kansas$27,716$45,639$17,923$55,44861.62%3.09
23Colorado$30,366$48,901$18,535$61,22651.36%3.30
24Illinois$28,850$52,080$23,230$77,70249.48%3.34
25District of Columbia$29,756$62,267$32,511$110,05047.71%3.38
26Oklahoma$27,001$42,732$15,731$53,42947.21%3.40
27West Virginia$26,844$42,183$15,339$52,47446.16%3.42
28Connecticut$33,775$60,338$26,563$92,02844.32%3.46
29Idaho$25,140$40,843$15,703$54,86843.10%3.49
30Nevada$29,351$45,840$16,489$58,66040.55%3.56
31Ohio$28,203$49,281$21,078$75,80039.04%3.60
32Minnesota$30,662$51,329$20,667$75,27237.28%3.64
33New York$30,084$54,214$24,130$88,70036.02%3.68
34South Carolina$25,698$43,712$18,014$66,61435.21%3.70
35Florida$25,275$43,371$18,096$70,75027.89%3.91
36Kentucky$26,518$44,249$17,731$69,47827.60%3.92
37Missouri$27,162$44,482$17,320$68,87525.73%3.98
38Utah$29,531$45,046$15,515$64,31620.61%4.15
39Tennessee$25,990$44,289$18,299$76,29719.92%4.17
40Nebraska$28,325$44,255$15,930$67,89517.31%4.26
41Wisconsin$29,904$47,339$17,435$75,42215.58%4.33
42South Dakota$27,706$40,472$12,766$55,80414.38%4.37
43Oregon$26,514$43,452$16,938$77,6529.06%4.58
44New Hampshire$32,844$51,767$18,923$93,0981.63%4.92
45Pennsylvania$29,692$50,170$20,478$103,810-1.37%5.07
46Massachusetts$32,237$57,029$24,792$126,338-1.88%5.10
47Iowa$29,615$46,382$16,767$88,702-5.49%5.29
48Maine$26,716$41,612$14,896$83,966-11.30%5.64
49Indiana$28,846$45,632$16,786$96,182-12.74%5.73
50Rhode Island$31,196$51,769$20,573$139,248-26.13%6.77
51Vermont$29,566$41,109$11,543$132,793-56.54%11.50

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1 Important Disclosures for Earnest.

Earnest Disclosures

  1. Rates include 0.25% Auto Pay Discount
     
  2. Explanation of Rates “With Autopay” (APD)
    Rates shown include 0.25% APR discount when client agrees to make monthly principal and interest payments by automatic electronic payment. Use of autopay is not required to receive an Earnest loan.

    Available Terms
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    Primary Only – 10, 12, 15 years

    In school deferred payment is not available in AL, AZ, CA, FL, MA, MD, MI, ND, NY, PA, and WA).


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3 Important Disclosures for College Ave.

CollegeAve Disclosures

College Ave Student Loans products are made available through either Firstrust Bank, member FDIC or M.Y. Safra Bank, FSB, member FDIC. All loans are subject to individual approval and adherence to underwriting guidelines. Program restrictions, other terms, and conditions apply.

  1. Rates shown are for the College Ave Undergraduate Loan product and include autopay discount. The 0.25% auto-pay interest rate reduction applies as long as a valid bank account is designated for required monthly payments. Variable rates may increase after consummation.
  2. This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a freshman borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 8.35% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $179.18 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $21,501.54. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary. This informational repayment example uses typical loan terms for a first year graduate student borrower who selects the Deferred Repayment Option with a 10-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 7.10% fixed Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 120 monthly payments of $141.66 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $16,699.21. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.

Information advertised valid as of 9/1/2020. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation. Lowest advertised rates require selection of full principal and interest payments with the shortest available loan term.


4 Important Disclosures for Discover.

Discover Disclosures

  1. Aggregate loan limits apply.
  2. Students who get at least a 3.0 GPA (or equivalent) qualify for a one-time cash reward on each new Discover undergraduate and graduate student loan. Reward redemption period is limited. Please visit DiscoverStudentLoans.com/Reward for any applicable reward terms and conditions.
  3. Lowest APRs shown are available for the most creditworthy applicants and include an interest-only repayment discount and Auto Debit Reward. The interest rate ranges represent the lowest and highest interest rates offered on Discover student loans, including undergraduate and graduate loans. The fixed interest rate is set at the time of application and does not change during the life of the loan. The variable interest rate is calculated based on the 3-Month LIBOR index plus the applicable margin percentage. For variable interest rate loans, the 3-Month LIBOR is 0.375% as of July 1, 2020. Discover Student Loans may adjust the rate quarterly on each January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1 (the “interest rate change date”), based on the 3-Month LIBOR Index, published in the Money Rates section of the Wall Street Journal 15 days prior to the interest rate change date, rounded up to the nearest one-eighth of one percent (0.125% or 0.00125). This may cause the monthly payments to increase, the number of payments to increase or both. Our lowest APR is only available to customers with the best credit and other factors. Your APR will be determined after you apply. It will be based on your credit history, which repayment option you choose and other factors, including your cosigner’s credit history (if applicable). Learn more about Discover Student Loans interest rates.
  4. Lowest APRs shown for Discover Student Loans are available for the most creditworthy applicants for the Discover Private Consolidation Loan and include an Auto Debit Reward. The fixed interest rate is set at the time of application and does not change during the life of the loan. The variable interest rate is calculated based on the 3-Month LIBOR index plus the applicable margin percentage. For variable interest rate loans, the 3-Month LIBOR is 0.375% as of July 1, 2020. Discover Student Loans may adjust the rate quarterly on each January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1 (the “interest rate change date”), based on the 3-Month LIBOR Index, published in the Money Rates section of the Wall Street Journal 15 days prior to the interest rate change date, rounded up to the nearest one-eighth of one percent (0.125% or 0.00125). This may cause the monthly payments to increase, the number of payments to increase or both. Our lowest APR is only available to customers with the best credit and other factors. Your APR will be determined after you apply. It will be based on your credit history, which repayment option you choose and other factors, including your cosigner’s credit history (if applicable). Learn more about Discover Student Loans interest rates.
Lowest APRs shown for Discover Student Loans are available for the most creditworthy applicants for undergraduate loans, and include an interest-only repayment discount and a 0.25% interest rate reduction while enrolled in automatic payments.

5 Important Disclosures for SoFi.

sofiDisclosures

UNDERGRADUATE LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.23% to 11.76% annual percentage rate (“APR”) (with autopay), variable rates from 1.90% to 11.66% APR (with autopay). GRADUATE LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.13% to 11.83% APR (with autopay), variable rates from 1.80% to 11.73% APR (with autopay). MBA AND LAW SCHOOL LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.30% to 11.98% APR (with autopay), variable rates from 1.97% to 11.89% APR (with autopay). PARENT LOANS: Fixed rates from 4.60% to 11.26% APR (with autopay), variable rates from 1.90% to 11.16% APR (with autopay). For variable rate loans, the variable interest rate is derived from the one-month LIBOR rate plus a margin and your APR may increase after origination if the LIBOR increases. Changes in the one-month LIBOR rate may cause your monthly payment to increase or decrease. Interest rates for variable rate loans are capped at 13.95%, unless required to be lower to comply with applicable law. Lowest rates are reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. If approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your creditworthiness, the repayment option you select, the term and amount of the loan and other factors, and will be within the ranges of rates listed above. 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. Information current as of 07/10/2020. Enrolling in autopay is not required to receive a loan from SoFi. SoFi Lending Corp., licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Financing Law License No. 6054612. NMLS #1121636 (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org).


6 Important Disclosures for Ascent.

Ascent Disclosures

Before taking out private student loans, you should explore and compare all financial aid alternatives, including grants, scholarships, and federal student loans and consider your future monthly payments and income. Applying with a cosigner may improve your chance of getting approved and could help you qualify for a lower interest rate. Ascent Student Loans may be funded by Richland State Bank (RSB). Ascent Student Loan products are subject to credit qualification, completion of a loan application, verification of application information and certification of loan amount by a participating school. Loan products may not be available in certain jurisdictions, and certain restrictions, limitations; and terms and conditions may apply. Ascent is a federally registered trademark of Turnstile Capital Management (TCM) and may be used by RSB under limited license. Richland State Bank is a federally registered service mark of Richland State Bank.

  1. Competitive variable rates calculated monthly at the time of loan approval based on a margin plus the 1-Month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) rounded to the nearest 1/100th of a percent. The current LIBOR is 0.176%, which may adjust monthly. Your interest rate may increase or decrease, based on LIBOR monthly changes. Rates are effective as of 09/01/2020 and reflect an Automatic Payment Discount. Automatic Payment Discount is available if the borrower is enrolled in automatic payments from their personal checking account and the amount is successfully withdrawn from the authorized bank account each month. (See Automatic Payment Discount Terms & Conditions.)
    1. Undergraduate Loans: Your variable interest rate may increase or decrease, based on LIBOR monthly changes, resulting in an APR range between 2.71% and 12.99%.  Fixed rate loans will not increase or decrease over the life of the loan and have an APR range between 3.53% and 14.50%. Rates reflect an Automatic Payment Discount of 0.25% on the lowest offered rate and a 2.00% discount on the highest offered rate. The following table shows a 48 month in-school period plus 9 months of grace prior to a full repayment term of either: 60-months (lowest fixed/variable rate), 144-months (highest fixed rate) or 180-months (highest variable rate) with examples of (i) Interest Only payments, (ii) $25 Minimum payments, and (iii) Deferred repayment options. (See Undergraduate Loan repayment examples.)
  2. Payments may be deferred. Subject to lender discretion, forbearance and/or deferment options may be available for borrowers who are encountering financial distress.
  3. Making interest only or partial interest payments while in school will not reduce the principal balance of the loan. There are three (3) flexible in-school repayment options that include fully deferred, interest only and $25 minimum repayment. (See Undergraduate Loan repayment examples.)
  4. Flexible repayment plans may be offered up to a fifteen (15) year repayment term for a variable rate loan and ten (10) year repayment term for a fixed rate loan. Students must be enrolled at least half-time at an eligible school. Minimum loan amount is $2,000.
  5. Interest rate reduction of either 0.25% (for Credit-Based Loans) or 2.00% (for Undergraduate Future Income-Based Loans) applies only when the borrower and/or cosigner sign up for automatic payments and the payment amount is successfully deducted from the designated bank account each month. The amount of the discount is dependent upon the loan product and credit history of the borrower at the time of application. Interest rate reduction(s) will not apply during periods when no payment is due, including periods of in-school, deferment, grace or forbearance, unless a regular payment amount has been arranged with the servicer. If you have two (2) consecutive returned payments for Nonsufficient Funds, we may cancel your automatic debit enrollment and you will lose the interest rate reduction. You will then need to re-qualify and re-enroll in automatic debit payments to receive the interest rate reduction.(See Automatic Payment Discount Terms & Conditions.)
  6. All applicants (individual and cosigner) are required to complete a brief online financial literacy course as part of the application process to be eligible for funding.
  7. Eligibility, loan amount and other loan terms are dependent on several factors, which may include: loan product, other financial aid, creditworthiness, school, program, graduation date, major, cost of attendance and other factors. Aggregate loan limits may apply. The cost of attendance is determined and certified by the educational institution.
  8. The legal age for entering into contracts is eighteen (18) years of age in every state except Alabama where it is nineteen (19) years old, Nebraska where it is nineteen (19) years old (only for wards of the state), and Mississippi and Puerto Rico where it is twenty-one (21) years old.
  9. 1% Cash Back Graduation Reward subject to terms and conditions. Click here for details. In order to be eligible for the 1% Cash Back Graduation Reward, borrower must meet the following criteria after graduation:
    • The student borrower has graduated from the degree program that the loan was used to fund.
    • The student borrower may change majors and/or transfer to a different school, but must obtain the same level of degree (e.g. – undergraduate or graduate)
    • The graduation date is more than 90 days and less than five (5) years after the date of the loan’s first disbursement.
    • Any loan that the student has borrowed under the Ascent loan is not more than 30-days delinquent or in a default status as of the graduation date and until any Graduation Reward is paid.
  10. Students can apply to release their cosigner and continue with the loan in only their name after making the first 24 consecutive regularly scheduled full principal and interest payments on-time and meeting the other eligibility criteria to qualify for the loan without a cosigner.

* Application times vary depending on the applicant’s ability to supply the necessary information for submission.


7 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.

CommonBond Disclosures

Offered terms are subject to change and state law restriction. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900), NMLS Consumer Access. 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 0.17% effective Sep 1, 2020 and may increase after consummation.


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.