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.

Rank State High school graduate salary College graduate salary Pay difference with college degree Cost of a Bachelor’s degree 5-year ROI of a Bachelor’s degree Years to break even on college costs
1 Wyoming $31,936 $45,519 $13,583 $22,422 202.89% 1.65
2 New Mexico $25,747 $43,257 $17,510 $34,945 150.54% 2.00
3 Arkansas $25,767 $44,101 $18,334 $41,629 120.21% 2.27
4 Texas $27,232 $51,701 $24,469 $57,121 114.18% 2.33
5 Georgia $26,350 $49,989 $23,639 $57,719 104.78% 2.44
6 Arizona $26,898 $48,159 $21,261 $52,524 102.39% 2.47
7 California $27,963 $56,010 $28,047 $69,506 101.76% 2.48
8 Alabama $26,132 $46,434 $20,302 $51,732 96.22% 2.55
9 Alaska $34,236 $52,769 $18,533 $47,524 94.99% 2.56
10 Montana $25,186 $38,283 $13,097 $34,184 91.56% 2.61
11 New Jersey $32,207 $61,128 $28,921 $78,100 85.15% 2.70
12 Mississippi $25,954 $40,952 $14,998 $40,657 84.44% 2.71
13 Maryland $33,584 $60,287 $26,703 $73,213 82.36% 2.74
14 Louisiana $28,300 $47,115 $18,815 $51,973 81.01% 2.76
15 Washington $31,011 $53,802 $22,791 $63,281 80.08% 2.78
16 Hawaii $30,971 $46,590 $15,619 $44,738 74.56% 2.86
17 Virginia $29,303 $55,509 $26,206 $75,970 72.48% 2.90
18 North Carolina $26,059 $45,377 $19,318 $56,410 71.23% 2.92
19 North Dakota $31,691 $43,555 $11,864 $35,198 68.53% 2.97
20 Michigan $26,347 $48,622 $22,275 $67,130 65.91% 3.01
21 Delaware $30,981 $51,156 $20,175 $62,078 62.50% 3.08
22 Kansas $27,716 $45,639 $17,923 $55,448 61.62% 3.09
23 Colorado $30,366 $48,901 $18,535 $61,226 51.36% 3.30
24 Illinois $28,850 $52,080 $23,230 $77,702 49.48% 3.34
25 District of Columbia $29,756 $62,267 $32,511 $110,050 47.71% 3.38
26 Oklahoma $27,001 $42,732 $15,731 $53,429 47.21% 3.40
27 West Virginia $26,844 $42,183 $15,339 $52,474 46.16% 3.42
28 Connecticut $33,775 $60,338 $26,563 $92,028 44.32% 3.46
29 Idaho $25,140 $40,843 $15,703 $54,868 43.10% 3.49
30 Nevada $29,351 $45,840 $16,489 $58,660 40.55% 3.56
31 Ohio $28,203 $49,281 $21,078 $75,800 39.04% 3.60
32 Minnesota $30,662 $51,329 $20,667 $75,272 37.28% 3.64
33 New York $30,084 $54,214 $24,130 $88,700 36.02% 3.68
34 South Carolina $25,698 $43,712 $18,014 $66,614 35.21% 3.70
35 Florida $25,275 $43,371 $18,096 $70,750 27.89% 3.91
36 Kentucky $26,518 $44,249 $17,731 $69,478 27.60% 3.92
37 Missouri $27,162 $44,482 $17,320 $68,875 25.73% 3.98
38 Utah $29,531 $45,046 $15,515 $64,316 20.61% 4.15
39 Tennessee $25,990 $44,289 $18,299 $76,297 19.92% 4.17
40 Nebraska $28,325 $44,255 $15,930 $67,895 17.31% 4.26
41 Wisconsin $29,904 $47,339 $17,435 $75,422 15.58% 4.33
42 South Dakota $27,706 $40,472 $12,766 $55,804 14.38% 4.37
43 Oregon $26,514 $43,452 $16,938 $77,652 9.06% 4.58
44 New Hampshire $32,844 $51,767 $18,923 $93,098 1.63% 4.92
45 Pennsylvania $29,692 $50,170 $20,478 $103,810 -1.37% 5.07
46 Massachusetts $32,237 $57,029 $24,792 $126,338 -1.88% 5.10
47 Iowa $29,615 $46,382 $16,767 $88,702 -5.49% 5.29
48 Maine $26,716 $41,612 $14,896 $83,966 -11.30% 5.64
49 Indiana $28,846 $45,632 $16,786 $96,182 -12.74% 5.73
50 Rhode Island $31,196 $51,769 $20,573 $139,248 -26.13% 6.77
51 Vermont $29,566 $41,109 $11,543 $132,793 -56.54% 11.50

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1 Important Disclosures for CollegeAve.

CollegeAve Disclosures

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

  1. All rates shown include the auto-pay 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 an 8-year repayment term, has a $10,000 loan that is disbursed in one disbursement and a 7% variable Annual Percentage Rate (“APR”): 96 monthly payments of $179.28 while in the repayment period, for a total amount of payments of $17,211.20. Loans will never have a full principal and interest monthly payment of less than $50. Your actual rates and repayment terms may vary.
  3. As certified by your school and less any other financial aid you might receive. Minimum $1,000.

Information advertised valid as of 11/1/2018. Variable interest rates may increase after consummation.


2 Important Disclosures for Discover.

Discover Disclosures

  1. At least a 3.0 GPA or equivalent qualifies for a one-time cash-reward of 1% of the loan amount of each new Discover student loan. Reward redemption period is limited. Please visit DiscoverStudentLoans.com/Reward for any applicable reward terms and conditions.
  2. View Terms and Conditions at DiscoverStudentLoans.com/AutoDebitReward.

3 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. Ascent rates are effective as of 11/01/2018 and include a 0.25% discount applied when a borrower in repayment elects automatic debit payments via their personal checking account. Competitive rates calculated monthly at the time of loan approval.
    Ascent Tuition Cosigned Loan: Variable rate loans are based on a margin between 2.00% and 11.00% plus the 1-Month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR), rounded to the nearest 1/100th of a percent. The current LIBOR is 2.290%, which may adjust monthly. Your interest rate may increase or decrease, based on LIBOR monthly changes, resulting in an APR range between 4.04% – 13.04%. Fixed rate loans have an APR range between 5.81% – 14.87%. For Ascent Tuition loan current rates and repayment examples visit www.AscentTuition.com/APR.
    Ascent Independent Non-Cosigned Loan: Variable rate loans are based on a margin between 4.00% and 12.50% plus the 1-Month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR), rounded to the nearest 1/100th of a percent. The current LIBOR is 2.290%, which may adjust monthly. Your interest rate may increase or decrease, based on LIBOR monthly changes, resulting in an APR range between 5.70% – 13.00%. Fixed rate loans have an APR range between 7.32% – 14.00%. For Ascent Independent non-cosigned loan current rates and repayment examples visit www.AscentIndependent.com/APR.
  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.
  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 0.25% for enrollment in automatic debit applies only when the borrower and/or cosigner signs up for automatic payments and the regularly scheduled, current amount due (including full, flat, or interest only payments, as applicable) is successfully deducted from the designated bank account each month. Interest rate reduction(s) will not apply during periods when no payment is due, including periods of In-School, Deferment, Grace or Forbearance. If you have two (2) returned payments for Nonsufficient Funds, we may cancel your automatic debit enrollment and you will lose the 0.25% interest rate reduction. You will then need to re-qualify and re-enroll in automatic debit payments to receive the 0.25% interest rate reduction.
  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 applicants ability to supply the necessary information for submission.


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5 Important Disclosures for PNC.

PNC Disclosures

  1. Interest will continue to accrue during periods of deferment. You will receive quarterly interest statements during this deferment period. Paying the interest as it accrues each quarter will save you money over the repayment term of the loan because any accrued interest that you do not pay will be added to the principal balance at the end of the deferment period.
  2. If automatic payment is discontinued, you will no longer receive an automatic payment discount. A federal regulation limits the number of transfers that may be made from a savings or money market account. Please contact your financial institution for more information on transfer limitations on savings accounts.
  3. A request to release a co-signer requires that you have made forty-eight (48) consecutive timely payments with no periods of forbearance or deferment within the forty-eight (48) month timeframe. “Timely payment” means each payment is made no later than the 15th day after the scheduled due date of the payment. “Consecutive payment” means the minimum monthly payment must be made for forty-eight (48) months straight without any interruption. To qualify for a co-signer release, the borrower must submit a request, meet the consecutive, timely payment requirements, provide proof of income and pass a credit check.

PNC Bank is one of the nation’s largest education loan providers. For over 40 years, PNC has been committed to helping students and their families make possible the adventure of college.


6 Important Disclosures for SunTrust.

SunTrust Disclosures

Before applying for a private student loan, SunTrust recommends comparing all financial aid alternatives including grants, scholarships, and both federal and private student loans. To view and compare the available features of SunTrust private student loans, visit https://www.suntrust.com/loans/student-loans/private.

Certain restrictions and limitations may apply. SunTrust Bank reserves the right to change or discontinue this loan program without notice. Availability of all loan programs is subject to approval under the SunTrust credit policy and other criteria and may not be available in certain jurisdictions.

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  1. Interest rates and APRs (Annual Percentage Rates) depend upon (a) the student’s and cosigner’s (if applicable) credit histories, (b) the repayment option and repayment term selected, (c) the requested loan amount and (4) other information provided on the online loan application. If approved, applicants will be notified of the rate applicable to your loan. Rates and terms effective for applications received on or after 11/01/2018. The current variable APRs for the program range from 4.123% APR to 13.126% APR and the current fixed APRs for the program range from 5.351% APR to 14.051% APR (the low APRs within these ranges assume a 7-year $10,000 loan, with two disbursements and no deferment; the high APRs within these ranges assume a 15-year $10,000 loan with two disbursements). The variable interest rate for each calendar month is calculated by adding the current One-month LIBOR index to your margin. LIBOR stands for London Interbank Offered Rate. The One-month LIBOR is published in the Money Rates section of The Wall Street Journal (Eastern Edition). The One-month LIBOR index is captured on the 25th day of the immediately preceding calendar month (or if the 25th is not a business day, the next business day thereafter), and is rounded up to the nearest 1/8th of one percent. The current One-month LIBOR index is 2.375% on 11/01/2018. The variable interest rate will increase or decrease if the One-month LIBOR index changes. The fixed rate assigned to a loan will never change except as required by law or if you request and qualify for the auto pay discount.
  2. Any applicant who applies for a loan the month of, the month prior to, or the month after the student’s graduation date, as stated on the application or certified by the school, will only be offered the Immediate Repayment option. The student must be enrolled at least half-time to be eligible for the partial interest, fully deferred and interest only repayment options unless the loan is being used for a past due balance and the student is out of school. With the Full Deferment option, payments may be deferred while the student is enrolled at least half-time at an approved school and during the six month grace period after graduation or dropping below half-time status, but the total initial deferment period, including the grace period, may not exceed 66 months from the first disbursement date. The Partial Interest Repayment option (paying $25 per month during in-school deferment) is only available on loans of $5,000 or more. For payment examples, see footnote 7. With the Immediate Repayment option, the first payment of principal and interest will be due approximately 30-60 calendar days after the final disbursement date and the minimum monthly payment is $50.00. There are no prepayment penalties.
  3. The 15-year term and Partial Interest Repayment option (paying $25 per month during in-school deferment) are only available for loan amounts of $5,000 or more. Making interest only or partial interest payments while in school deferment (including the grace period) will not reduce the principal balance of the loan. Payment examples within this footnote assume a 45-month deferment period, a six-month grace period before entering repayment and the Partial Interest Repayment option. 7 year term: $10,000 loan disbursed over two transactions with a 7 year repayment term (84 months) and a 8.468% APR would result in a monthly principal and interest payment of $199.90. 10 year term: $10,000 loan disbursed over two transactions with a 10-year repayment term (120 months) and an 8.938% APR would result in a monthly principal and interest payment of $162.92. 15 year term: $10,000 loan disbursed over two transactions with a 15-year repayment term (180 months) and a 9.423% APR would result in a monthly principal and interest payment of $136.90.
  4. The 2% principal reduction is based on the total dollar amount of all disbursements made, excluding any amounts that are reduced, cancelled, or returned. To receive this principal reduction, it must be requested from the servicer, the student borrower must have earned a bachelor’s degree or higher and proof of such graduation (e.g. copy of diploma, final transcript or letter on school letterhead) must be provided to the servicer. This reward is available once during the life of the loan, regardless of whether the student receives more than one degree.
  5. Earn an interest rate reduction for making automatic payments of principal and interest from a bank account (“auto pay discount”). Earn a 0.25% interest rate reduction when you auto pay from any bank account and an extra 0.25% interest rate reduction when you auto pay from a SunTrust Bank checking, savings, or money market account. The auto pay discount will continue until (1) automatic deduction of payments is stopped (including during any deferment or forbearance) or (2) three automatic deductions are returned for insufficient funds during the life of the loan. The extra 0.25% interest rate reduction when you auto pay from a SunTrust Bank account will be applied after the first automatic payment is successfully deducted and will be removed for the reasons stated above. In the event the auto pay discount is removed, the loan will accrue interest at the rate stated in your Credit Agreement. The auto pay discount is not available when payments are deferred or when the loan is in forbearance, even if payments are being made.
  6. A cosigner may be released from the loan upon request to the servicer provided that the student borrower is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien, has met credit criteria and met either one of the following payment conditions: (a) the first 36 consecutive monthly principal and interest payments have been made on-time (received by the servicer within 10 calendar days after their due date) or (b) the loan has not had any late payments and has been prepaid prior to the end of the first 36 months of scheduled principal and interest payments in an amount equal to the first 36 months of scheduled principal and interest payments (based on the monthly payment amount in effect when you make the most recent payment). As an example, if you have made 30 months of consecutive on-time payments, and then, based on the monthly payment amount in effect on the due date of your 31st consecutive monthly payment, you pay a lump sum equal to 6 months of payments, you will have satisfied the payment condition. Cosigner release may not be available if a loan is in forbearance.
  7. If the student dies after any part of the loan has been disbursed, and the loan has not been charged off due to non-payment or bankruptcy, then the outstanding balance will be forgiven if the servicer is informed of the student’s death and receives acceptable proof of death. If the student becomes totally and permanently disabled after any part of the loan has been disbursed and the loan has not been charged off due to non-payment or bankruptcy, the loan will be forgiven upon the servicer’s receipt and approval of a completed discharge application. If the student borrower dies or becomes totally and permanently disabled prior to the full disbursement of the loan, and the loan is forgiven, all future disbursements will be cancelled. Loan forgiveness for student death or disability is available at any point throughout the life of the loan.

7 Important Disclosures for LendKey.

LendKey Disclosures

Additional terms and conditions apply. For more details see LendKey


8 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.

CommonBond Disclosures

A government loan is made according to rules set by the U.S. Department of Education. Government loans have fixed interest rates, meaning that the interest rate on a government loan will never go up or down.

Government loans also permit borrowers in financial trouble to use certain options, such as income-based repayment, which may help some borrowers. Depending on the type of loan that you have, the government may discharge your loan if you die or become permanently disabled.

Depending on what type of government loan that you have, you may be eligible for loan forgiveness in exchange for performing certain types of public service. If you are an active-duty service member and you obtained your government loan before you were called to active duty, you are entitled to interest rate and repayment benefits for your loan.
If you are unable to pay your government loan, the government can refer your loan to a collection agency or sue you for the unpaid amount. In addition, the government has special powers to collect the loan, such as taking your tax refund and applying it to your loan balance.

A private student loan is not a government loan and is not regulated by the Department of Education. A private student loan is instead regulated like other consumer loans under both state and federal law and by the terms of the promissory note with your lender.
If you refinance your government loan, your new lender will use the proceeds of your new loan to pay off your government loan. Private student loan lenders do not have to honor any of the benefits that apply to government loans. Because your government loan will be gone after refinancing, you will lose any benefits that apply to that loan. If you are an active-duty service member, your new loan will not be eligible for service member benefits. Most importantly, once you refinance your government loan, you will not able to reinstate your government loan if you become dissatisfied with the terms of your private student loan.

If your private student loan has a fixed interest rate, then that rate will never go up or down. If your private student loan has a variable interest rate, then that rate will vary depending on an index rate disclosed in your application. If the interest rate on the new private student loan is less than the interest rate on your government loans, your payments will be less if you refinance.
If you are a borrower with a secure job, emergency savings, strong credit and are unlikely to need any of the options available to distressed borrowers of government loans, a refinance of your government loans into a private student loan may be attractive to you. You should consider the costs and benefits of refinancing carefully before you refinance.

If you don’t pay a private student loan as agreed, the lender can refer your loan to a collection agency or sue you for the unpaid amount.

Remember also that like government loans, most private loans cannot be discharged if you file bankruptcy unless you can demonstrate that repayment of the loan would cause you an undue hardship. In most bankruptcy courts, proving undue hardship is very difficult for most borrowers.


9 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.

Citizens Bank Disclosures

  1. Student Loan Rate Disclosure: Variable rate, 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 November 1, 2018, the one-month LIBOR rate is 2.29%. Variable interest rates range from 4.26% – 12.23% (4.26% – 12.13% APR) and will fluctuate over the term of the loan with changes in the LIBOR rate, and will vary based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a cosigner. Fixed interest rates range from 5.25% – 12.19% (5.25% – 12.09% APR) based on applicable terms, level of degree earned and presence of a cosigner. Lowest rates shown requires application with a cosigner, are for eligible applicants, require a 5-year repayment term, borrower making scheduled payments while in school and include our Loyalty and Automatic Payment discounts of 0.25 percentage points each, as outlined in the Loyalty Discount and Automatic Payment Discount disclosures. 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. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Citizens Bank is required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The borrower will be presented with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before they accept the terms and conditions of the loan.
  2. Multi-year approval funds available for future use are subject to a soft credit inquiry at time of your next request to verify continued eligibility. After we make the initial Loan to you, we may refuse to allow you to take out additional loans under the multi-year approval feature, terms and conditions will be outlined in your promissory note. Please Note: International students are not eligible to receive an offer for multi-year approval. Please Note: International Students are not eligible for the multi-year approval feature.
  3. Loyalty Discount Disclosure: The borrower will be eligible for a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their loan if the borrower or their co-signer (if applicable) has a qualifying account in existence with us at the time the borrower and their co-signer (if applicable) have submitted a completed application authorizing us to review their credit request for the loan. The following are qualifying accounts: any checking account, savings account, money market account, certificate of deposit, automobile loan, home equity loan, home equity line of credit, mortgage, credit card account, or other student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. Please note, our checking and savings account options are only available in the following states: CT, DE, MA, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, and VT and some products may have an associated cost. This discount will be reflected in the interest rate disclosed in the Loan Approval Disclosure that will be provided to the borrower once the loan is approved. Limit of one Loyalty Discount per loan and discount will not be applied to prior loans. The Loyalty Discount will remain in effect for the life of the loan.
  4. Automatic Payment Discount Disclosure: Borrowers will be eligible to receive a 0.25 percentage point interest rate reduction on their student loans owned by Citizens Bank, N.A. during such time as payments are required to be made and our loan servicer is authorized to automatically deduct payments each month from any bank account the borrower designates. Discount is not available when payments are not due, such as during forbearance. If our loan servicer is unable to successfully withdraw the automatic deductions from the designated account three or more times within any 12-month period, the borrower will no longer be eligible for this discount.
  5. Co-signer Release: Borrowers may apply for co-signer release after making 36 consecutive on-time payments of principal and interest. For the purpose of the application for co-signer release, on-time payments are defined as payments received within 15 days of the due date. Interest only payments do not qualify. The borrower must meet certain credit and eligibility guidelines when applying for the co-signer release. Borrowers must complete an application for release and provide income verification documents as part of the review. Borrowers who use deferment or forbearance will need to make 36 consecutive on-time payments after reentering repayment to qualify for release. The borrower applying for co-signer release must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. If an application for co-signer release is denied, the borrower may not reapply for co-signer release until at least one year from the date the application for co-signer release was received. Terms and conditions apply.
3.94%
12.78%
1
Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents

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4.04% – 13.04%3Undergraduate and Graduate

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4.34%
12.99%
2
Undergraduate and Graduate

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4.25% – 11.10%*,4Undergraduate and Graduate

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5.03% – 11.23%5Undergraduate and Graduate

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4.12% – 13.13%6Undergraduate and Graduate

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4.92% – 10.01%7Undergraduate and Graduate

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3.72%
9.68%
8
Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents

Visit CommonBond

4.26%
12.13%
9
Undergraduate, Graduate, and Parents

Visit Citizens

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