This post contains marketing information, fact checked by Money. We may earn a commission when you click links on our site. Learn more about how we make money.
With a falling stock market and coronavirus fears spreading, the only good news today is dropping interest rates. Now is the time to take advantage of this low rate environment (opportunities like this don’t come around often). If you still need to pay off your student loans, chances are that you can lock in some massive savings.
Is refinancing your student loans the right move now?
The Federal Reserve recently did an emergency rate cut to drop the federal funds rate by 0.5%. It only happens in unprecedented times. All student loan interest rates are based on these rates, and that means loan originators have access to cheaper funds. The good news is that they can pass those savings on to you.
"Right now, we’re seeing private lenders that offer student loan refinancing through Credible reducing their rates, with some offering their lowest rates ever,” says Rob Humann, General Manager at Credible.
This is just part of the story. Competition has been heating up in the student loan refinance market. School costs are ballooning, and we’re seeing new lenders stepping in to provide financing.
Check out how much money you can save by refinancing
It always makes sense to check your rate with lenders. Yes, even if you recently refinanced. Your credit score may have increased or you might make more money now than you did before. It’s simple to check your rate on sites like Credible.com and it won’t negatively impact your credit score. You don’t have to refinance today, but you should know this information.
Why it’s always a good idea to shop around for rates
Student loan companies have slightly different underwriting rules and rates. It’s common for borrowers to get completely different rates from two similar lenders or even be rejected by one lender and accepted by another.
You’ll also want to make sure there are no application fees or origination fees. The only costs should be your monthly payments that consist of principal and interest.
Student loan companies typically give you a choice between fixed or variable rates. The variable rate is currently priced lower than the fixed, and it moves in tandem with the Federal Reserve lowering or raising interest rates. If you refinance your student loan today, and an additional rate cut comes later this year, you will still be able to benefit. Fixed, on the other hand, means that your interest rate will not change through the life of the loan.
The best rates are reserved for those with a low DTI (debt-to-income ratio) and strong credit scores, but there are usually options for anyone that has a FICO credit score over 650.
Credible.com stands out because they make shopping around and refinancing very simple. Credible has a useful comparison tool so you can check out top lenders side-by-side. The website is simple to use and all of the terms are transparently displayed.
We went through the process and it was really easy. Here’s how it works:
- Fill out a short online form that takes 2 minutes or less.
- Get real rates from 10+ lenders
- Choose the best option that works for you
See how much you can start saving now.