Refinancing with Earnest
Refinancing rates from 2.50% APR. Checking your rates won’t affect your credit score.
LendKey is on a mission to help borrowers save money on their loans, and it believes community banks and credit unions offer some of the lowest interest rates and best customer service to student loan borrowers.
That’s why LendKey has partnered with thousands of community banks and credit unions to collect their student loan refinance offers. If you’re interested in refinancing your student loans, read on to learn how the LendKey student loan refinancing platform could help you find the best rates.
The basics of refinancing student loans with LendKey
Even if you’re ready to refinance your student loans, you might not know which lender to choose. LendKey helps you find the right one by connecting you with community banks and credit unions. Local banks and credit unions don’t have the same name recognition as big banks, so this service shows you offers you might otherwise never learn about.
Both these institution types typically have geographic or other requirements, so LendKey reviews your information and only shows you offers from banks and credit unions for which you’re eligible. For instance, if you’re affiliated with the military, LendKey might show you Navy Federal Credit Union refinancing offers. If you then see an offer you like at Navy FCU, you can use the LendKey student loan refinancing platform to choose an offer and submit a full application.
LendKey’s refinancing partners offer variable rates starting at 2.81% and fixed rates from 3.64%. The amount you can refinance varies by state, and typically you can choose repayment terms of five, seven, 10, 15, or 20 years.
Note that even if you choose a longer repayment term than what you currently have on your loans, you can always pay off your student loan ahead of schedule without penalty.
What we like about the LendKey student loan refinancing platform
The LendKey refinancing platform makes the loan-shopping process easy. Here are three features that make LendKey especially useful for student loan borrowers looking to refinance.
It shows you offers with low interest rates
LendKey promises that its community bank and credit union partners offer low interest rates, and it delivers on this promise. LendKey’s partners offer variable rates between 2.81% and 8.79% and fixed rates between 3.64% and 8.92%.
These interest rates are generally competitive with what big banks and online lenders have to offer, though of course, you must have a strong credit score and income to qualify for the lowest rates (or apply with a cosigner who does).
But if you can qualify, you could lower your student loan interest rate considerably and save money over the life of your student loan.
It allows you to compare multiple offers at once
The LendKey student loan refinancing platform makes the rate shopping process easy and painless. Its streamlined platform is easy to use, and it allows you to check your rates with multiple lenders at once.
All you have to do is provide a few basic pieces of information, such as your income, your loan amount and the school you attended. LendKey reviews this information and instantly tells you if you pre-qualify for refinancing.
Plus, this rate check only involves a soft credit pull, so it won’t affect your credit score. It also ensures you’re eligible for each institution you see, so you don’t have to do the work of figuring out which banks or credit unions are in your area.
It provides unique offers you might not find otherwise
Community banks and credit unions often don’t have the same reach or budget for marketing as do big banks and national online lenders. As a result, you might never hear about local or small-scale institutions that could provide you with low rates and personalized customer service.
Thanks to LendKey, though, you’ll get a chance to connect with these community lenders. Of course, checking your rates doesn’t require any commitment to refinancing with any of them. But you’ll get to see offers, so you can decide if any are right for you.
What to keep in mind about LendKey refinancing offers
Although LendKey is a great resource for student loan borrowers, there are some potential drawbacks. Consider these downsides so that you don’t miss out on the best refinancing offers and lender benefits.
The platform is limited to LendKey’s partner lenders
LendKey partners with more than 13,000 community financial institutions to bring you student loan refinancing offers. But this number gets cut down considerably based on each lender’s eligibility requirements.
Plus, you won’t see offers from other banks (such as Citizens Bank) or online lenders (such as SoFi or Earnest), which could have better terms. If your goal is to find the lowest interest rate, it’s a good idea to shop around with a variety of lenders, including national banks and online lenders.
Although the LendKey student loan refinancing platform could be part of your search, it’s a good idea to look elsewhere, too, so you don’t miss out on even better deals.
You should still do extra research on the lender you choose
Although LendKey matches you with lenders, it doesn’t necessarily give you all the information about each lender. Before selecting an offer, take time to find out about the lender’s requirements, terms and conditions.
Check out customer reviews, for instance, and see if the lender offers more benefits, such as cosigner release, unemployment protection or the option to skip a payment if you run into financial hardship.
LendKey facilitates your application with a lender, but ultimately your loan will come from the bank or credit union itself. So make sure you’ve gotten answers to all your questions before finalizing any paperwork.
Is the LendKey student loan refinancing platform right for you?
LendKey offers an alternative to big banks by bringing credit unions and local banks into the forefront of the student loan refinancing market. Because there’s no commitment, there’s no reason not to check with LendKey and see what offers you get.
Keep in mind that no offers are final until LendKey runs a hard credit check on your account. Assuming your credit score is strong enough, you should have no trouble getting a refinanced loan. Since LendKey is not the actual lender, read the fine print of any agreement before signing.
You should also note that refinancing student loans has some downsides. If you’re refinancing federal loans, you’ll lose some federal programs and protections. For instance, you’ll no longer be eligible for federal income-driven repayment plans or forgiveness programs.
Before turning your federal student loans into a private refinancing loan, make sure you understand what doors you’ll be closing. And check with your new lender to see if it offers any protections in the event of financial hardship.
If refinancing is the right option for you, LendKey could help you find an offer with competitive terms. As a result, you could consolidate multiple loans into one, possibly lower your interest rates and maybe even save a nice chunk of money on your student loan repayment.
Interested in refinancing student loans?Here are the top 6 lenders of 2019!
|Lender||Variable APR||Eligible Degrees|
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
1 Important Disclosures for SoFi.
2 Important Disclosures for Earnest.
To qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or possess a 10-year (non-conditional) Permanent Resident Card, reside in a state Earnest lends in, and satisfy our minimum eligibility criteria. You may find more information on loan eligibility here: https://www.earnest.com/eligibility. Not all applicants will be approved for a loan, and not all applicants will qualify for the lowest rate. Approval and interest rate depend on the review of a complete application.
Earnest fixed rate loan rates range from 3.89% APR (with Auto Pay) to 7.89% APR (with Auto Pay). Variable rate loan rates range from 2.50% APR (with Auto Pay) to 7.27% APR (with Auto Pay). For variable rate loans, although the interest rate will vary after you are approved, the interest rate will never exceed 8.95% for loan terms 10 years or less. For loan terms of 10 years to 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 9.95%. For loan terms over 15 years, the interest rate will never exceed 11.95% (the maximum rates for these loans). Earnest variable interest rate loans are based on a publicly available index, the one month London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). Your rate will be calculated each month by adding a margin between 1.82% and 5.50% to the one month LIBOR. The rate will not increase more than once per month. Earnest rate ranges are current as of April 17, 2019, and are subject to change based on market conditions and borrower eligibility.
Auto Pay discount: If you make monthly principal and interest payments by an automatic, monthly deduction from a savings or checking account, your rate will be reduced by one quarter of one percent (0.25%) for so long as you continue to make automatic, electronic monthly payments. This benefit is suspended during periods of deferment and forbearance.
The information provided on this page is updated as of 04/17/2019. Earnest reserves the right to change, pause, or terminate product offerings at any time without notice. Earnest loans are originated by Earnest Operations LLC. California Finance Lender License 6054788. NMLS # 1204917. Earnest Operations LLC is located at 302 2nd Street, Suite 401N, San Francisco, CA 94107. Terms and Conditions apply. Visit https://www.earnest.com/terms-of-service, email us at email@example.com, or call 888-601-2801 for more information on our student loan refinance product.
© 2018 Earnest LLC. All rights reserved. Earnest LLC and its subsidiaries, including Earnest Operations LLC, are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.
3 Important Disclosures for Laurel Road.
Laurel Road Disclosures
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the fixed rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular fixed interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
However, if the borrower chooses to make monthly payments automatically by electronic funds transfer (EFT) from a bank account, the variable rate will decrease by 0.25%, and will increase back up to the regular variable interest rate described in the preceding paragraph if the borrower stops making (or we stop accepting) monthly payments automatically by EFT from the designated borrower’s bank account.
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.
4 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.
5 Important Disclosures for CommonBond.
Offered terms are subject to change. Loans are offered by CommonBond Lending, LLC (NMLS # 1175900). If you are approved for a loan, the interest rate offered will depend on your credit profile, your application, the loan term selected and will be within the ranges of rates shown.
All Annual Percentage Rates (APRs) displayed assume borrowers enroll in auto pay and account for the 0.25% reduction in interest rate. All variable rates are based on a 1-month LIBOR assumption of 2.49% effective March 10, 2019.
6 Important Disclosures for Citizens Bank.
Citizens Bank Disclosures
|2.50% – 7.27%1||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 7.12%3||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.81% – 8.79%4||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.50% – 6.65%2||Undergrad & Graduate|
|2.55% – 7.12%5||Undergrad & Graduate|
|3.00% – 9.74%6||Undergrad & Graduate|