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With the rising costs of college, more and more families are turning to private student loan options to finance their education and in recent years, many new lenders have emerged offering student loan services. College Ave Student Loans is one of the more recent arrivals on the scene, but it differentiates itself by being more convenient and offering greater flexibility than many other student loan providers. In this College Ave Student Loans review, we will thoroughly analyze their offers and services in order to help our readers decide if getting a student loan through them is the right choice.
What Is the College Ave Student Loans Program
College Ave was founded in 2014, and its focus is primarily students looking to take out or refinance student loans that expect flexibility and ease of use from their financial institutions. It offers loans for both undergraduate and graduate studies, as well as refinancing and loans for parents of college students.
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There are four repayment options available, which is more than most lenders. Students can start paying both principal and interest immediately, pay only interest until graduation, pay a flat amount until graduating, or fully defer payments until they are finished with their studies.
- Fixed Rates: 5.29% – 12.07% APR for undergraduate loans, 5.29% – 8.76% APR for graduate loans, 6.62% – 10.57% APR for parent loans, and 5.29% – 12.07% APR for carreer loans.
- Variable Rates: 3.69% – 10.94% APR for undergraduate loans, 3.69% – 8.89% APR for graduate loans, 4.96% – 9.94% APR for parent loans, and 3.69% – 10.94% APR for career loans.
- Loan Terms: 5, 8, 10, or 15 years for undergraduate, graduate, and career loans, and anywhere between 5 and 15 years for parent loans.
- Minimum Amount: $1,000.
- Maximum Amount: up to the cost of attendance, minus any other loans or financial aid. Undergraduate students can borrow at most $150,000, while graduate students can borrow at most $250,000.
College Ave Student Loan Requirements
No student loan provider review, including this College Ave Student Loans review, is complete without looking at the requirements in order to qualify for a loan through them. For College Ave, they are fairly similar to most other private education lenders: you need a good credit score and regular, verifiable income.
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There are several services that can help you find out your credit score. The requirements are less stringent if you have a cosigner, who can be removed from the loan after at least 24 full on-time payments.
- Credit Score: upper 600s to low 700s without a cosigner; cosigner should have a credit score around 650 or higher.
- Annual Income: at least $35,000 for a new loan, or double your debt load if refinancing. If your credit score is over 750, you could qualify with a debt-to-income ratio of up to 80%.
- Citizenship: Both the primary borrower and the cosigner must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident (green card holder).
- Application Fee: None
- Other Requirements: The student loan must be for attending an accredited school that qualifies for Title IV government financial aid. Neither you nor your cosigner may have filed for bankruptcy.
We Liked College Ave Student Loans Because…
- Flexibility in loan amounts, terms, and repayment schedules;
- Quick and transparent application process;
- Very informative website with many available tools;
- Interest rates that are competitive with federal loans and other financial institutions;
- Loan limits that are big enough to cover tuition at most colleges or universities;
The excellent flexibility that is offered by the different repayment options was our favorite part of this College Ave Student Loans review. In particular, the ability to combine different term lengths and repayment plans allows each student or parent to tailor both the monthly payments and the overall cost of the loan to their personal financial situation. That kind of flexibility, while relatively common in home or auto financing, has been lacking in the student loan sector. That is a strong point in College Ave’s favor.
The application process for the student loans is also relatively simple, including a quick three-minute pre-qualification that makes it easy to see whether you will qualify or need a cosigner, as well as giving you a sense of the payments you may be looking at. Similarly, the College Ave webpage is very transparent, with plenty of payment calculators and student loan examples that easily get across the complicated financial choices that taking out a student loan entails. It also offers fairly competitive interest rates and high loan limits that together make it a very good choice for a wide variety of borrowers.
Not So Sure About…
- Relatively stringent requirements;
- Not the most competitive rates on the market;
- Founded by former Sallie Mae executives;
- Some repayment options are of little use;
We have not come across any major deficiencies when putting together our College Ave Student Loans review, but there are a few areas where it did not quite match up our expectations or against its competitors in the private student loan market. College Ave has a rather high eligibility standard, making a cosigner a requirement for many of the typical applicants.
There are also lenders that offer better student loan rates than College Ave, especially for highly qualified applicants that meet College Ave’s requirements. A financially-savvy student with established credit can get a slightly better deal than the one College Ave is offering, though it will probably be a bit more difficult. And while this may not have much of an effect on its offerings, College Ave is run by several former Sallie Mae executives.
As Sallie Mae did not enjoy a particularly good reputation over the last decade, this may make some borrowers wary. Finally, while the many flexible options were noted as a strength in our College Ave Student Loans review, some of the repayment programs have questionable value. The fixed repayment plan, in particular, seems to offer few advantages over interest-only payments or a full deferment. While it may make sense in rare cases, it can be a misleading choice for many borrowers.
Online College Ave Loan Reviews Say That
Most of the College Ave Student Loans reviews found online are fairly positive. Just like our reviewers, they tend to praise College Ave’s informative website and easy application process. There are few complaints or negative press about College Ave, which speaks well of it. Outside of its customers, it is also rated fairly well as a business in general, earning an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.
College Ave Student Loans Contact Details
- Website: collegeavestudentloans.com
- Customer Support: 844-422-7502
- Contact Page: www.collegeavestudentloans.com/contact
- Email address: [email protected]
The final verdict of our College Ave Student Loans review is a positive one. For students and parents looking for private student loans, College Ave offers a good combination of ease of use and competitive pricing. While borrowers with a great credit history can get a slightly better rate elsewhere, it won’t be as easy or as flexible as borrowing with College Ave, which makes it a good choice for many. Have you borrowed or refinanced a student loan with College Ave? Tell us about your experience!