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Most countries have some sort of federal aid to help students with their education expenses. Most federal student loan applications will take into consideration the student's family finances.

Private Student Loans can help if you don't qualify for a Government student loan. Most banks and financial institutions will help you get a loan for college. Many will ask parents or someone else to co-sign if you don't have a credit record or a bad credit history.For many full time and part time students - government student loans make all the difference between money saved for school, and the expense of actually going to school.


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The Stafford Student Loan is a government secured loans that most colleges and universities can secure for you.

The Stafford Student Loan is the most widely used and low cost loan for students in the U.S. There are some other benefits, the interest might be tax-deductible, there is no pre-payment penalties and you can consolidate the Stafford loan with other federal student loans to potentially lower your payments.

Student Loans Gov is a private website with information about Federal Student Aid.

Consolidating Student Loans is a way to simplify the repayment process and maybe get lower payments. Your different loans might have different terms and repayment schedules. A student loan consolidation can help. Federal and private loans cannot be consolidated.

A student loan is meant to assist students pay for school and university tuition, books, and reasonable living expenses. A student loan might be different than other loan types in that the interest rate might be quite a bit lower, and the repayment schedule may be deferred while the student is in school.

In the US, there are two types of student loans.

  • Federal loans to students sponsored by the federal government
  • Private student loans which might include state affiliated non-profits and institutional loans provided by schools.

The majority of student loans are federal loans.

Federal loans can be subsidized or unsubsidized loans. Interest does not accrue on subsidized loans while the students are in education. Student loans might be offered as part of a total financial aid package that may also include grants, scholarships, and/or work study opportunities.

Federal Student loans are for the most part less expensive than private student loans. However, the federal student lending program still generates billions of $$ in clear profit for the government each year, because the interest payments exceed the government's own borrowing costs - loan losses, and administrative costs. Losses on student loans are very low - even when students default. In part because these loans cannot be discharged in bankruptcy unless repaying the loan would create an "undue hardship" for the student borrower and his or her dependents.

Federal Student Aid is an office of the U.S. Department of Education. They ensure that all eligible individuals can get federal financial assistance, be it grants, loans or work-study programs. They are committed to making education past high school more possible for Americans regardless of socio-economic status. The aid from their programs allows students and their families to cover school expenses, including tuition and fees, room and board, books and supplies, and transportation. To receive federal student aid, a student must be enrolled in an eligible program at participating postsecondary institution, whether it be a two- or four-year public or private college or university, career school, or trade school. There are three basic types of federal student aid: grants, loans, and work-study.

Government Student Grants do not have to be repaid. Sometimes they are referred to as gift aid. Generally, grants are for undergraduate students, and the grant amount is based on the student's financial need, as determined by the information reported on the FAFSA, cost of attendance, and enrollment status. There are six federal grants:

   * Federal Pell Grant

   * Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant (FSEOG)

   * Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG)

   * National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent Grant (National SMART Grant)

   * Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) Grant

   * Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant

Student Loans are borrowed money that must be repaid with interest. Their loan programs allow undergraduate and graduate students to borrow money to cover their education expenses. Parents also may borrow to pay education expenses for dependent undergraduate students. Generally, loan amounts depend on your years in school, cost of attendance, and the amount of other student financial aid received. Some loans are based on the student's financial need and others are not. There are five federal loans:

   * Federal Perkins Loan

   * Federal Stafford Loan

   * PLUS Loan for Parents

   * PLUS Loan for Graduate and Professional Degree Students

   * Consolidation Loan

Work-study lets students earn money while enrolled in school to help pay for education expenses.

Not all schools in the U.S. participate in all Federal Student Aid programs. Ask the financial aid administrator at your school about the programs that are available.

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