Refinance rates with Splash Financial start at 1.88%.
Checking your rates won’t affect your score.
Note that the situation for student loans has changed due to the impact of the coronavirus outbreak and relief efforts from the government, student loan lenders and others. Check out our Student Loan Hero Coronavirus Information Center for additional news and details.
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If you’re looking to pit CommonBond vs. SoFi, you might already know a great deal about student loan refinancing — a strategy that could help you save money on interest or lower your monthly debt payment.
Both of these leading student loan refinancing companies stand out from their competition by offering low interest rates, a variety of repayment terms and protections like deferment and forbearance. But how do they stand out from each other?
Let’s dive deeper to find out whether one finishes on top in the SoFi vs. CommonBond showdown:
CommonBond vs. SoFi: The basics
As relatively newer companies with high-tech approaches to lending, CommonBond and SoFi have a lot in common. For one, they provide student loan refinancing for the most debt-burdened borrowers. CommonBond will refinance up to $500,000, while SoFi has no maximum amount.
Both provide competitive interest rates and let you choose between fixed and variable rates on your refinanced student loan. CommonBond also has a hybrid loan option, which involves a fixed rate for five years and a variable rate for the rest of your term.
The CommonBond vs. SoFi chart below takes a closer look at the rates and terms on these two lenders’ student loan refinancing products.
|Loan amount||$5,000 to $500,000||$5,000 or more|
|APR range||Variable: 2.50% – 6.85%
Fixed: 2.83% – 6.74%
|Variable: 2.25% – 6.39%
Fixed: 2.74% – 6.74%
|Repayment terms||Up to 20 years||Up to 20 years|
|Rate type||Fixed, variable or hybrid||Fixed or variable|
|Autopay discount||0.25 percentage points||0.25 percentage points|
|Allows a cosigner?||Yes||Yes|
|Offers cosigner release?||Yes (after 36 consecutive on-time payments)||No (though you could refinance a second time to release the cosigner)|
|Eligibility requirements||● Minimum 660 credit score
● Received a bachelor’s degree from an eligible school
● U.S. citizen, permanent resident or visa holder
● Meet other requirements for income and employment
|● Minimum 650 credit score
● Received at least an associate degree from an eligible school
● U.S. citizen, permanent resident or visa holder
● Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program recipients or non-permanent residents can apply with a U.S. permanent resident cosigner
● Meet other requirements for income and employment
|Residency requirements||Lends in all states except for Mississippi and Nevada||Lends in all 50 states|
|Extra benefits||● 32 months of deferment if you return to school
● 24 months of forbearance if you encounter financial hardship
● When you refinance, CommonBond pays to educate a child in a developing country.
|● Deferment if you return to school
● Forbearance if you encounter financial hardship, experience unemployment or serve in the military
● Career, financial coaching
● Community events
● Entrepreneur Program
Since CommonBond and SoFi allow for instant rate quotes, you can easily compare preliminary offers from the two lenders. Although you might go with the loan with the lowest interest rate, remember that there are other factors to consider, too.
Although CommonBond and SoFi offer competitive terms and useful benefits to creditworthy borrowers, CommonBond offers a few perks that its rival doesn’t.
Here are four scenarios when it could make sense to choose CommonBond as your refinancing provider.
With its variable APR starting at 2.50%, CommonBond advertised a slightly lower interest rate on a refinanced student loan than SoFi did at the time this article was published. That said, things can change, so it’s worth checking the rates, and either way, you or your cosigner will need excellent credit to qualify for those lowest rates.
If your priority is to save the most money on interest, CommonBond could come out as the winner against SoFi. But look at your offered rates with both lenders to see which will give you your best deal based on the information you provide in your application.
The first five years will have a fixed rate, after which the loan will switch to a variable rate. The variable rate will be assigned based on the London Interbank Offered Rate — a key financial benchmark, often known as LIBOR — and could fluctuate.
That said, you could pay off your loan ahead of time without penalty. According to CommonBond, the hybrid loan is best for borrowers who intend to pay off their loan earlier than planned and avoid much exposure to the variable interest rate.
With the hybrid loan, you could get a lower fixed rate than you would on the traditional fixed-rate loan. If you can pay off your debt within five years, you’ll save money on interest and never have to deal with the uncertainty of a variable rate.
Adding a cosigner to your refinancing application could help you qualify for lower rates, especially if you don’t have strong credit or steady income. But you and your cosigner must be comfortable sharing debt, as your cosigner’s finances will be on the line if you can’t pay.
CommonBond, however, offers the perk of loan cosigner release. If you make 36 consecutive on-time monthly payments, you could apply to have your cosigner removed from the loan. Going forward, you’d be the only one responsible for your debt.
SoFi, on the other hand, allows you to apply with a cosigner, but it doesn’t offer a cosigner release.
When you refinance with CommonBond, the lender promises to cover the cost of a child’s education in Laos, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Ghana. It partners with nonprofit organization Pencils of Promise to provide schools, teachers and technology to thousands of young learners.
To date, CommonBond has donated over $1 million and built 470-plus schools through this program. If you want to refinance with a lender that’s committed to improving social good, CommonBond could be the right choice for you.
While CommonBond has low rates and flexible terms, SoFi also offers a variety of benefits to customers, plus it often has relatively low interest rates, so it’s worth looking at when you do your comparison shopping.
Here are three instances when refinancing with SoFi might be preferable to refinancing with CommonBond.
While both SoFi and CommonBond allow cosigners and are relatively accessible as compared to other competing lenders, SoFi’s eligibility criteria are more lenient.
You might find yourself ineligible for CommonBond if you’re refinancing student loans with an associate degree as opposed to a bachelor’s, for example.
Here are other times where SoFi might be a more accessible alternative to CommonBond:
- Your credit score falls in the 650-to-660 range
- You’re a non-permanent resident or DACA recipient with a U.S. permanent resident cosigner
- You have an associate degree
- You live in Mississippi or Nevada
- You have more than $500,000 of student loan debt
If you’re in one of these categories, you might find a new competing lender to compare with SoFi. For example, EdVestinU works with borrowers who didn’t graduate or hold an associate degree.
SoFi is unique for all the benefits it offers to its customers. Here are the resources you’ll be connected with if you choose to refinance your student loans with SoFi:
- Career services to help you with searching for a job, changing careers and personal branding
- Financial coaching to help you achieve your financial and investing goals
- Community events to meet people through dinners, happy hours, educational activities, networking opportunities and other exclusive experiences
- Member discount of 0.125% on additional loans you borrow from SoFi
- Bonus for referring another customer
SoFi offers a special student loan product for medical and dental residents looking to refinance their medical school debt. If you’re a medical resident or fellow with more than $10,000 in student loans, you could be eligible for a SoFi medical resident refinance loan.
You can choose repayment terms of 5, 7, 10, 15 or 20 years, as well as a fixed or variable rate. You won’t have to make full monthly payments right away. Instead, you can send in $100 per month until you finish your program, for up to 54 months.
While some residents simply put their loans into deferment, refinancing and making small monthly payments could limit the accrual of interest — SoFi even promises not to compound interest. As a result, your balance won’t be as big when you finish residency and start full repayment.
With that said, medical and dental school graduates have a host or repayment options, so review our related guides:
What to know before choosing a refinancing lender
Before making a decision in the SoFi vs. CommonBond battle, make sure you understand the pros and cons of student loan refinancing.
For instance, refinancing can save you money if you qualify for a lower interest rate. It lets you adjust your monthly payments by choosing new repayment terms — a shorter term could get you out of debt faster, whereas a longer term could reduce your monthly bills.
Plus, you can refinance both federal and private student loans together into one new loan, simplifying your debt.
But when you refinance a federal student loan, you turn it into a private one. As a result, you lose access to federal programs, such as income-driven repayment plans and certain loan forgiveness programs.
If you’re relying on either, refinancing likely wouldn’t be a good move. But if you’re confident you can pay back the loan on time — or take advantage of CommonBond or SoFi’s deferment and forbearance benefits, if necessary — then refinancing could save you money on your debt.
CommonBond vs. SoFi: Which is right for you?
When comparing CommonBond vs. SoFi, it’s obvious that both lenders offer useful perks and benefits to customers, along with competitive rates and flexible repayment terms on their student loans.
Neither comes out as a clear winner in the SoFi vs. CommonBond contest. Rather, the right lender depends on your unique circumstances and needs.
If the option of cosigner release is important to you, for instance, CommonBond could be the better choice. But if you’re intrigued by SoFi’s member benefits, you might be better off going with SoFi.
Either way, make sure to compare offers from a variety of lenders before choosing. By shopping around, you can feel confident you’ve found the best offer for your refinanced student loan.
Andrew Pentis contributed to this report.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 9 lenders of 2021!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
|1.88% – 6.15%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.88% – 5.64%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.88% – 5.64%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 6.85%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.25% – 6.39%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.90% – 5.25%6||Undergrad & Graduate|
|1.89% – 5.90%7||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.39% – 6.01%||Undergrad |
|2.13% – 5.25%8||Undergrad & Graduate|
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for Splash Financial.
Splash Financial Disclosures
Terms and Conditions apply. Splash reserves the right to modify or discontinue products and benefits at any time without notice. Rates and terms are also subject to change at any time without notice. Offers are subject to credit approval. To qualify, a borrower must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident in an eligible state and meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers receive the lowest rate. Lowest rates are reserved for the highest qualified borrowers. If approved, your actual rate will be within a range of rates and will depend on a variety of factors, including term of loan, a responsible financial history, income and other factors. Refinancing or consolidating private and federal student loans may not be the right decision for everyone. Federal loans carry special benefits not available for loans made through Splash Financial, for example, public service loan forgiveness and economic hardship programs, fee waivers and rebates on the principal, which may not be accessible to you after you refinance. The rates displayed may include a 0.25% autopay discount
The information you provide to us is an inquiry to determine whether we or our lenders can make a loan offer that meets your needs. If we or any of our lending partners has an available loan offer for you, you will be invited to submit a loan application to the lender for its review. We do not guarantee that you will receive any loan offers or that your loan application will be approved. Offers are subject to credit approval and are available only to U.S. citizens or permanent residents who meet applicable underwriting requirements. Not all borrowers will receive the lowest rates, which are available to the most qualified borrowers. Participating lenders, rates and terms are subject to change at any time without notice.
To check the rates and terms you qualify for, Splash Financial conducts a soft credit pull that will not affect your credit score. However, if you choose a product and continue your application, the lender will request your full credit report from one or more consumer reporting agencies, which is considered a hard credit pull and may affect your credit.
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 June 1, 2021.
2 Rate range above includes optional 0.25% Auto Pay discount. Important Disclosures for Earnest.
Interest Rate Disclosure
Actual rate and available repayment terms will vary based on your income. Fixed rates range from 2.59% APR to 5.79% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). Variable rates range from 1.88% APR to 5.64% APR (excludes 0.25% Auto Pay discount). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 36% (the maximum allowable for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate student loan refinance 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 2.04% and 5.8% to the one month LIBOR. Earnest rate ranges are current as of 6/8/2021, and are subject to change based on market conditions.
Auto Pay Discount Disclosure
You can take advantage of the Auto Pay interest rate reduction by setting up and maintaining active and automatic ACH withdrawal of your loan payment. The interest rate reduction for Auto Pay will be available only while your loan is enrolled in Auto Pay. Interest rate incentives for utilizing Auto Pay may not be combined with certain private student loan repayment programs that also offer an interest rate reduction. For multi-party loans, only one party may enroll in Auto Pay.
Student Loan Refinancing Loan Cost Examples
These examples provide estimates based on payments beginning immediately upon loan disbursement. Variable APR: A $10,000 loan with a 20-year term (240 monthly payments of $72) and a 5.89% APR would result in a total estimated payment amount of $17,042.39. For a variable loan, after your starting rate is set, your rate will then vary with the market. Fixed APR: A $10,000 loan with a 20-year term (240 monthly payments of $72) and a 6.04% APR would result in a total estimated payment amount of $17,249.77. Your actual repayment terms may vary.Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest. com/terms-of-service, e-mail us at [email protected], or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
Earnest Loans are made by Earnest Operations LLC or One American Bank, Member FDIC. Earnest Operations LLC, NMLS #1204917. 535 Mission St., Suite 1663, San Francisco, CA 94105. California Financing Law License 6054788. Visit earnest.com/licenses for a full list of licensed states. For California residents (Student Loan Refinance Only): Loans will be arranged or made pursuant to a California Financing Law License.
One American Bank, 515 S. Minnesota Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57104. Earnest loans are serviced by Earnest Operations LLC with support from Navient Solutions LLC (NMLS #212430). One American Bank and Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
© 2021 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved.
3 Important Disclosures for Navient.
4 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
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 0.15% effective Jan 1, 2021 and may increase after consummation.
5 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
Fixed rates from 2.74% APR to 6.74% APR (with autopay). Variable rates from 2.25% APR to 6.39% APR (with autopay). All variable rates are based on the 1-month LIBOR and may increase after consummation if LIBOR increases; see more at SoFi.com/legal/#1. If approved for a loan your rate will depend on a variety of factors such as your credit profile, your application and your selected loan terms. Your rate will be within the ranges of rates listed above. Lowest rates reserved for the most creditworthy borrowers. SoFi refinance loans are private loans and do not have the same repayment options that the federal loan program offers, or may become available, such as Income Based Repayment or Income Contingent Repayment or PAYE. SoFi loans are originated by SoFi Lending Corp. or an affiliate (dba SoFi), a lender licensed by the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation under the California Financing Law, license #6054612; NMLS #1121636 (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org). Additional terms and conditions apply; see SoFi.com/eligibility for details. SOFI RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
6 Important Disclosures for LendKey.
Refinancing via LendKey.com is only available for applicants with qualified private education loans from an eligible institution. Loans that were used for exam preparation classes, including, but not limited to, loans for LSAT, MCAT, GMAT, and GRE preparation, are not eligible for refinancing with a lender via LendKey.com. If you currently have any of these exam preparation loans, you should not include them in an application to refinance your student loans on this website. Applicants must be either U.S. citizens or Permanent Residents in an eligible state to qualify for a loan. Certain membership requirements (including the opening of a share account and any applicable association fees in connection with membership) may apply in the event that an applicant wishes to accept a loan offer from a credit union lender. Lenders participating on LendKey.com reserve the right to modify or discontinue the products, terms, and benefits offered on this website at any time without notice. LendKey Technologies, Inc. is not affiliated with, nor does it endorse, any educational institution.
Subject to floor rate and may require the automatic payments be made from a checking or savings account with the lender. The rate reduction will be removed and the rate will be increased by 0.25% upon any cancellation or failed collection attempt of the automatic payment and will be suspended during any period of deferment or forbearance. As a result, during the forbearance or suspension period, and/or if the automatic payment is canceled, any increase will take the form of higher payments. The lowest advertised variable APR is only available for loan terms of 5 years and is reserved for applicants with FICO scores of at least 810.
As of 04/07/2021 student loan refinancing rates range from 1.90% APR – 5.25% Variable APR with AutoPay and 2.95% APR – 7.63% Fixed APR with AutoPay.
7 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
All credit products are subject to credit approval.
Laurel Road began originating student loans in 2013 and has since helped thousands of professionals with undergraduate and postgraduate degrees consolidate and refinance more than $4 billion in federal and private school loans. Laurel Road also offers a suite of online graduate school loan products and personal loans that help simplify lending through customized technology and personalized service. In April 2019, Laurel Road was acquired by KeyBank, one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies. 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. All loans are provided by KeyBank National Association, a nationally chartered bank. Member FDIC. For more information, visit www.laurelroad.com.
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.
Assumptions: Repayment examples above assume a loan amount of $10,000 with repayment beginning immediately following disbursement. Repayment examples do not include the 0.25% AutoPay Discount.
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.
Interest Rate: A simple annual rate that is applied to an unpaid balance.
Variable Rates: The current index for variable rate loans is derived from the one-month London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”) and changes in the LIBOR index may cause your monthly payment to increase. Borrowers who take out a term of 5, 7, or 10 years will have a maximum interest rate of 9%, those who take out a 15 or 20-year variable loan will have a maximum interest rate of 10%.
KEYBANK NATIONAL ASSOCIATION RESERVES THE RIGHT TO MODIFY OR DISCONTINUE PRODUCTS AND BENEFITS AT ANY TIME WITHOUT NOTICE.
This information is current as of April 29, 2021. Information and rates are subject to change without notice.
8 Important Disclosures for PenFed.
Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is the cost of credit calculating the interest rate, loan amount, repayment term and the timing of payments. Fixed Rates range from 2.89%-4.78% APR and Variable Rates range from 2.13%-5.25% APR. Both Fixed and Variable Rates will vary based on application terms, level of degree and presence of a co-signer. These rates are subject to additional terms and conditions and rates are subject to change at any time without notice. For Variable Rate student loans, the rate will never exceed 9.00% for 5 year and 8 year loans and 10.00% for 12 and 15 years loans (the maximum allowable for this loan). Minimum variable rate will be 2.00%. 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.