Get Smart About Consolidation
Consolidation is available on both federal and private student loans, but federal student loans and private student loans may not be consolidated together.
However, before a borrower decides to consolidate, you should look closely at what student loan consolidation actually is to determine if it is the right decision for you.
Keep in mind that you normally will not be able to consolidate your loans until after you graduate or withdraw from school. If you choose to consolidate your loans, you may be able to extend your repayment period from 10-25 years up to 30 years. This will reduce your monthly payments, but will greatly increase the total amount of interest you will pay over the life of the loan. On the other hand, if one lender holds all of your loans there is a good chance that you may be able to obtain an extended repayment period without consolidating your loans by consulting with your lender.
Federal Stafford and PLUS loans disbursed after 7/1/2006 are set at fixed interest rate.
Please note, variable rate Stafford and PLUS loans are currently set at the following rates: