As a parent, you may have taken out Parent PLUS Loans to help your child with their education. But as you’re getting closer to retirement age and managing multiple financial priorities, you may start to wonder how you can lessen some of the burden associated with repayment.
Parent PLUS Loans currently have a 6.99% interest rate, which is on the higher end for federal student loans and can make it difficult to get ahead on principal payments.
To alleviate some of the immediate financial burden, Parent PLUS borrowers might consider income-contingent repayment plans or public service loan forgiveness.
Another option? Transfer your Parent Plus Loans to your child’s name. If you and your child mutually agree on this move, you could pass on the responsibility of paying back these loans to your child.
Keep reading to learn more about how to transfer Parent PLUS loans to your child’s name and if it’s right for you.
How to Transfer Parent PLUS Loan to Student
Parent PLUS loans are made directly to parents for their child’s education. The way things are set up now through the Department of Education, parents cannot transfer loans to a child and parents are solely responsible for paying back the loan.
But there’s a way to get around this: refinancing Parent PLUS loans in your child’s name. In order to refinance Parent PLUS loans, your child must apply.
“Even though the current loan is in the parent’s name, the child must fill out the application with his or her information including income, school, and degree,” said Phil DeGisi, Chief Marketing Officer at CommonBond.
Each lender will have their own eligibility requirements, but typically, lenders want the child to prove they have the financial means to pay back the loan themselves.
SoFi, Laurel Road, and CommonBond consider information such as income, school, and type of degree. Additionally, in order to qualify, your child must have earned a Bachelor’s degree or higher.
Dan Macklin, co-founder of student loan refinancing company SoFi, noted similar eligibility requirements.
According to Macklin, “SoFi will take into account several factors, such as the graduate’s (the applicant’s) eligibility, education, career experience, monthly income relative to expenses, and financial history in determining whether to refinance a Parent PLUS into a loan in the graduate’s name.”
To transfer the Parent PLUS loans to your child, follow the below steps:
- Ask your child to apply for a refinancing loan in his or her own name with a lender like SoFi, Laurel Road, or CommonBond. You can help your child complete the application, but the lender will approve or deny it based on his/her information alone.
- Include the Parent PLUS loan, and note that it is under your name, on the refinancing application
- If approved, the lender will issue your child a new loan, which can be used to pay off your Parent PLUS loans.
The new loan will have its own terms and conditions, and potentially a lower interest rate as well. Unlike the Parent PLUS loan, the new loan will be entirely in your child’s name.
“Transferring a loan from parent to child absolves parents from the debt obligation and enables the child to select the appropriate loan terms, and the child may be able to reduce monthly payments on the outstanding debt, as some Parent PLUS loans have rates as high as 8.5 percent,” said Macklin. “It also enables the parent to refocus on their own goals, such as saving for retirement.”
Benefits of Refinancing Parent Plus Loans
There are many benefits to refinancing Parent PLUS loans:
- Your child could get a lower interest rate on the Parent PLUS loan.
- The parent is released from the loan.
- The child can build credit by making on-time payments.
If you want to refinance Parent PLUS loans and pass on the responsibility to your child, they could stand to save thousands of dollars in interest. In addition, they could take advantage of unique benefits offered by the lender, such as unemployment protection, career service, and networking events.
Drawbacks of Refinancing Parent PLUS Loans
Before you decide to refinance your Parent PLUS loans, there are some things you should know first:
- By refinancing, you’ll lose federal student loan protections such as income-contingent repayment options and Public Service Loan Forgiveness.
- The legal liability for the loans will be transferred to the child, as the Parent PLUS loans will be paid off, and your child will now repay the new loan.
- The process is not reversible.
If you want to refinance Parent PLUS Loans, you and your child should be 100 percent on the same page. Both you and your child should understand the financial and legal implications of doing so and also have a firm grasp of what you may be giving up.
Wondering if refinancing is a good idea for you? Answer a few questions below and we’ll help you find the right solution! Otherwise, scroll down to read on.
Parents should share the details of the loan, including the total balance, with the child and help pick a repayment term that offer affordable monthly payments and fits their lifestyle.
In many cases, borrowers can check their potential rate without it affecting their credit score (often known as a “soft pull” on credit).
Before you and your child transfer Parent PLUS loans, check out each lender’s eligibility requirements and borrower perks to see if refinancing is right for you.
Interested in refinancing your Parent PLUS loans into your child's name?Here are the top lenders of 2018!
|Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!|
|2.75% - 7.24%||Visit SoFi|
|2.57% - 7.12%||Visit CommonBond|
|2.99% - 6.99%||Visit Laurel Road|
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