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Top Lenders to Consolidate and Refinance Parent PLUS Loans

refinance-parent-plus-loans

We’ve written a lot about how college graduates can pay off their student loans faster or even refinance their loans. Now, we want to give some much needed airtime to parents. There is a population of student loan borrowers that is often not talked about: Parent PLUS loan borrowers.

Parent PLUS loans are taken out by parents to pay for their children’s education and come with a pretty hefty interest rate, which is currently at 7.21%. We hear a lot about how college graduates are affected by student loan debt, but not as much about how Parent PLUS loans affect parents.

Currently, there are 3 million Parent PLUS loan borrowers with a total of $62 billion in debt. Parent PLUS loans are not eligible for income-based repayment or forgiveness. Dealing with high debt loads and a high interest rate with parents nearing retirement age can be a tough combination.

Luckily, there is relief on the way. Many banks are starting to offer refinancing for Parent PLUS loan borrowers — big news, considering that parents could potentially save thousands of dollars in interest through refinancing.

Through refinancing, parents are eligible to get a better interest rate and not be stuck at the higher-than-average rate of 7.21%. Parent PLUS borrowers are typically attractive candidates for refinancing because they have a longer credit history and tend to have stable employment. Refinancing can be a great option for Parent PLUS borrowers to save money on interest.

Here are the top five banks for refinancing Parent PLUS loans:

1. SoFi

SoFi is changing the lending landscape. They originally started out with standard student loan refinancing and now have options to refinance Parent PLUS loans. In addition, they also offer personal loans and mortgage refinancing. They offer some interesting perks and support for borrowers as well.

Details:

  • Offers 5, 7, 10, 15 and 20 year repayment terms
  • Fixed rates: 3.35% APR to 6.74% APR (with autopay)
  • Variable rates: 2.61% APR to 6.54% APR (with autopay), capped at 8.95% to 9.95% APR
  • No application or origination fees
  • No prepayment penalties
  • Application looks at employment history, income, credit rating, and education
  • Nevada residents are not eligible for refinancing at this time, and variable rate loans are not available in Tennessee or Ohio
  • Offers career support, should you lose your job
  • Has a unique entrepreneur program for those who qualify
Learn More About SoFi

2. Laurel Road

Laurel Road focuses on refinancing MBA, law, medical, and engineering degrees, among others. They also offer refinancing for Parent PLUS loans and state that a borrower with $100,000 could save more than $15,000 over the life of a 10-year loan.

Details:

  • Offers 5, 7, 10, 15 and 20 year repayment terms
  • Variable rates: 3.64% – 6.29% (with autopay)
  • Fixed rates: 4.20% – 7.20% (with autopay)
  • No origination fees
  • No prepayment penalties
  • Parents can refinance the loan in their own name or their child’s name
  • Child must be working and have completed their Bachelor’s or graduate degree
  • Offers a 0.25% interest reduction with autopay
  • Maximum variable rates capped at 9% for 5, 10, and 15 year terms. For 20 year term, maximum rate cap is 18% APR
Learn More About Laurel Road

3. CommonBond

Do you want your refinancing with a side of philanthropy? CommonBond might be the best option for you. For each fully funded loan through CommonBond, the bank will fund the education of a student abroad for one year through their partner, Pencils of Promise. They also offer a unique approach to interest rates, offering fixed rates, and variable and hybrid rates.

Details:

  • Offers 5, 7, 10, 15, and 20 year repayment terms
  • Variable rates: 2.62% – 6.54% APR (with autopay)
  • Fixed rates: 3.37% – 6.74% APR (with autopay)
  • Also offers hybrid rate loans, which are a mixture of fixed and variable repayment terms, at 3.81% – 6.25% APR (with autopay)
  • No origination fee
  • No prepayment penalty
  • Offers unemployment protection, so you can postpone your payments if you lose your job
  • Will help you find a new job in case of job loss
  • For every fully funded loan, they will fund the education of a student in need abroad for one year
Learn More About CommonBond

4. Citizens Bank

Citizens Bank offers the Education Refinance Loan for federal and private student loans as well as Parent PLUS loans. If you have already consolidated your loan, you can still refinance with Citizens Bank for a better rate. You can refinance Parent PLUS loans with one of the oldest financial services firms in the United States.

Details:

  • Offers 5, 10, 15 and 20 year repayment terms
  • Variable rates: 2.54% APR to 8.39%4 APR (with autopay)4
  • Fixed rates: 4.74%4 APR to 8.24% APR (with autopay)4
  • No application fee
  • No origination fee
  • No prepayment penalty
  • You can receive an additional 0.25% interest deduction with autopay
  • Must have proof of income
  • Loans available from $10,000 to $170,000 depending on your education level
  • (See disclosure and repayment examples)
Learn More About Citizens

Refinancing often makes sense for Parent PLUS loan borrowers, as there is already a lack of repayment options such as income-based repayment and forgiveness.

Not only that, but Parent PLUS loan borrowers may have a higher chance of getting approved because of their credit history and employment status, which could mean thousands of dollars in savings.

Interested in refinancing your Parent PLUS loans?

Here are the top 6 lenders of 2017!
LenderRates (APR) 
Check out the testimonials and our in-depth reviews!
2.61% - 6.74%Visit SoFi
3.64% - 7.20%Visit Laurel Road
2.62% - 6.74%Visit CommonBond
2.52% - 7.26%Visit LendKey
2.54% - 8.39%Visit Citizens
2.61% - 6.49%Visit Earnest
Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. 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, understand what you are buying, and consult 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. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Our Top 6 Picks for Student Loan Refinancing

Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. 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, understand what you are buying, and consult 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. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.


TOP PICKS Student Loan Hero Student Loan Hero Student Loan Hero Student Loan Hero Student Loan Hero
Variable Rates
Variable-rate student loans have interest rates that can change during the repayment period. Interest rates may increase or decrease at any time and typically do so based on changes to LIBOR. Often, the introductory rate on a variable-rate loan is lower than that of a fixed rate loan, though it has the potential to increase later. Learn more
2.61 %- 6.54 % 3.64 %- 6.29 % 2.62 %- 6.54 % 2.54 %- 8.39 % 2.61 %- 6.28 %
Fixed Rates
A fixed-rate student loan guarantees a single interest rate that does not change over the lifetime of the loan. Fixed-rate loans often have higher rates than the introductory rates on variable loans. However, borrowers have peace of mind knowing their monthly payments will always be the same amount. Learn more
3.35 %- 6.74 % 4.20 %- 7.20 % 3.37 %- 6.74 % 4.74 %- 8.24 % 3.35 %- 6.49 %
Terms
"Term" refers to the length of the loan, typically in years. In general, the shorter the term, the lower the interest rate and the higher the monthly payments. Longer terms will typically result in lower monthly payments but at a higher interest rate. Borrowers may select any term offered by a lender regardless of the current loan term. Learn more
5, 7, 10, 15, 20 5, 7, 10, 15, 20 5, 7, 10, 15, 20 5, 10, 15, 20 5 to 20
Soft Credit Check
A "soft" credit check allows a lender to check the applicant's credit and provide the applicant with an estimated interest rate without affecting their credit score. This is unlike a "hard" credit check, which may impact an applicant's credit.
Visit SoFi Visit Laurel Road Visit CommonBond Visit Citizens Visit Earnest

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

Transfer Parent PLUS From Parent to Child/Graduate
Many parents take out "Parent PLUS" loans to pay for their children to attend college. Some lenders will permit the refinancing of those Parent PLUS loans from the parent's name into the name of the child/graduate.
Refi Parent PLUS Loans
Indicates whether or not the lender allows parents who took out Parent PLUS loans on behalf of their children to refinance their loans.
Eligible Degrees
Our partners refinance student loans from both undergraduate and graduate degrees.
Undergrad
& Graduate
Undergrad
& Graduate
Undergrad
& Graduate
Undergrad
& Graduate
Undergrad
& Graduate
Eligible Loans
Our partners refinance both private and federal student loans. Both types of loans can be consolidated to create a single payment.
Private & Federal Private & Federal Private & Federal Private & Federal Private & Federal
Min. Credit Score
This is the lowest credit score a lender will consider when determining borrower eligibility. While some lenders do not indicate a specific minimum score, they typically still evaluate a borrower's credit profile to determine eligibility. Learn more
Good or Excellent score needed 680 660 680 No min
Min. Annual Income
The minimum annual income a lender is will consider for borrower eligibility.
No min No min No min $24k No min
No Cosigner Required
If checked, this lender does not require that the applicant have a cosigner to apply.
Ability to Apply With a Cosigner
Applicants have the option to add a cosigner to meet eligibility requirements and/or get better rates and terms on their loan.
Visit SoFi Visit Laurel Road Visit CommonBond Visit Citizens Visit Earnest

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS Continued

Cosigner Release Offered (Existing Loans)
If the applicant's initial student loans had a cosigner, the applicant may have the option to refinance their loans solely in the borrowers name and "release" the original cosigner(s).
Cosigner Release Offered (Refinanced Loans)
If the applicant chooses to add a cosigner to the refinanced loan, the applicant may have the option to "release" that cosigner from the refinanced loan at a later date.
Borrower Can Be Delinquent on Current Student Loans
If the borrower's student loans are currently delinquent (but not in default), they may or may not be eligible to refinance.
Borrower Can Apply While Still Enrolled in School
If a borrower is currently enrolled in a graduate or undergraduate degree program and has not yet earned a degree, the borrower may or may not be eligible to refinance.
(with signed job offer)
Borrower Must Currently Be Employed
Certain lenders may require the borrower to be employed in order to be eligible for student loan refinancing.
Yes (or signed job offer) Yes (or signed job offer) Yes (or signed job offer) Yes Yes (or signed job offer)
Minimum GPA Required
Our partners currently refinace student loans regardless of a borrower's graduate or undergraduate GPA.
No min No min No min No min No min
Visit SoFi Visit Laurel Road Visit CommonBond Visit Citizens Visit Earnest

Refinancing Product Information

Min. Lending Amount
The minimum student loan balance a borrower must currently have to refinance with the lender.
$5k $5k $5k $10k $5k
Max. Lending Amount
The maximum student loan balance a borrower must currently have to refinance with the lender.
No Max No Max $500k $90k undergrad
$225k grad
No Max
Auto-Pay Interest Rate Reduction
Lenders may offer an interest rate reduction for setting up automated monthly loan payments. This reduction is typically already factored into the fixed and variable rates quoted above.
Yes
0.25%
Yes
0.25%
Yes
0.25%
Yes
0.25%
Yes
0.25%
Average Savings
The average amount borrowers have saved by refinancing with this lender. Unless indicated otherwise, values shown are over the lifetime of the loan. See each lender's website with more details on how this figure is calculated.
$316/month* $20,200* $24,046* $132/month* $21,810*
Unemployment Protection/Benefits
If a borrower loses their job through no fault of their own, they may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits with some lenders. If approved for this benefit, the lender will put the borrower's loans into forbearance, suspending their monthly loan payments. Unpaid interest will continue to accrue and will be capitalized (added) onto the borrower's principal balance. Borrowers typically have the option to make interest-only payments during this period in order to prevent accruing interest from increasing their balance.
(up to 12 months)
(up to 12 months)
(up to 12 months)
(up to 12 months)
(up to 12 months)
Interest-Only Payment Option
Some lenders may allow you to make interest-only payments for a period of time during your repayment period.
Discharge Due to Death
Some lenders may discharge the student loan upon the death of the borrower.
Visit SoFi Visit Laurel Road Visit CommonBond Visit Citizens Visit Earnest

Refinancing Product Information Continued

Origination Fees
Origination fees are added expenses that lenders may charge for granting a new loan.
None None None None None
Prepayment Penalty
Prepayment penalties are fees charged by lenders for paying off the balance of the loan before its scheduled pay-off date.
None None None None None
State Residency
Some lenders may not refinance student loans for residents of certain states.
Any except residents of NV Any Any except LA, ME, RI, or NV Any See Below
Previously Defaulted (Now Rehabilitated)
Loans Eligible
Indicates whether or not the lender allows loans that were previously in default, but have now been rehabilitated, to be refinanced. Loans currently in default are generally not eligible for refinancing.
Visit SoFi Visit Laurel Road Visit CommonBond Visit Citizens Visit Earnest

Borrowers must reside in one of the following states to be eligible to refinance their student loans at Earnest: AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WA, Washington D.C., WI, WV, or WY

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Avg. Time to Check Rate
An estimate of how long (on average) it will take for a borrower to simply check their refinancing interest rate. For lenders that offer a soft credit check, this will not hurt a borrower's credit score.
< 3 minutes < 3 minutes < 3 minutes < 3 minutes < 3 minutes
Avg. Time to Apply
An estimate of how long (on average) it will take for a borrower to fully complete a student loan refinancing application.
< 10 minutes < 10 minutes < 10 minutes < 20 minutes < 15 minutes
Apply on Mobile Device
Indicates whether or not a lender accepts applications from a mobile device.
Interest Is Tax Deductible
Indicates whether or not the interest paid on the refinanced student loan may be eligible for the student loan interest tax deduction (assuming all other eligibility requirements are met). Learn more
Personal Reference Required
Some lenders may require a personal reference in order to apply for student loan refinancing.
No No No No No
Year Established
The year the student loan refinancing company was established.
2011 2006 2011 1828 / 2014 for refi student loans 2013
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* Average savings based on lender specific calculations. Please visit their site for more information.

Our Top 6 Picks for Student Loan Refinancing

Lender Rates (APR) Loan Types Terms Eligible Degrees Eligible Loans More Info
2.61% - 6.74% Variable & Fixed 5, 7, 10, 15, 20 Undergrad & Graduate Private & Federal Visit SoFi
3.64% - 7.20% Variable & Fixed 5, 7, 10, 15, 20 Undergrad & Graduate Private & Federal Visit Laurel Road
2.62% - 6.74% Variable & Fixed 5, 7, 10, 15, 20 Undergrad & Graduate Private & Federal Visit CommonBond
2.52% - 7.26% Variable & Fixed 5, 7, 10, 15, 20 Undergrad & Graduate Private & Federal Visit LendKey
2.54% - 8.39% Variable & Fixed 5, 10, 15, 20 Undergrad & Graduate Private & Federal Visit Citizens
2.61% - 6.49% Variable & Fixed 5 to 20 Undergrad & Graduate Private & Federal Visit Earnest
Advertiser Disclosure

Student Loan Hero Advertiser Disclosure

Our team at Student Loan Hero works hard to find and recommend products and services that we believe are of high quality and will make a positive impact in your life. 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, understand what you are buying, and consult 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. Please do your homework and let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Published in Federal Student Loan Refinancing, Federal Student Loan Repayment, Parent PLUS Loans, Refinance Student Loans