The Tremendous Value of Private Student Loan Prequalification


The Tremendous Value of Private Student Loan Prequalification


Are you able to do a prequalification for your private student loans?

If you aren’t sure – or the answer is no – you may want to look for another lender. Prequalification is enormously valuable, and if you don’t take advantage of the process you’re definitely missing out.

Here’s what you need to know about prequalification and how to find lenders that offer it!

[Federal and Private Student Loans From A to Z]

What is Private Loan Prequalification?

While a federal loan is offered through the government, a private student loan is offered through individual banks and credit unions. With a federal loan, everyone gets the same interest rate. But with a private loan, the interest rates vary depending on your credit and other factors.

Prequalification gives you a chance to move beyond the printed interest rate ranges offered by lenders. The lenders will do a soft credit hit – which does not impact your credit – and ask a few other questions to determine a more specific credit result for you and your student.

Once you answer the questions, the lender will be able to give you additional specific information. These details may include:

  • A more specific interest rate or range for your situation
  • An estimated loan amount you will be approved for
  • Any fees that may be included
  • The estimated payments you could owe depending on the loan terms you choose

Don’t Worry – Research!

Once the college admission process is complete, you have a waiting time before you get your student’s final financial numbers. Students are choosing classes, making housing choices, and determining meal plans.

What do you do during those months? Don’t worry – research!

You don’t want to apply for private loans or parent PLUS loans until you receive the final financial bill from the school. After all, many lenders limit you to the actual cost of attendance, and you don’t know that amount right now.

Instead, look for options. Start by comparing private lenders based on key factors: interest rates, prequalification options, cosigner release, and hardship release options.

Then, take advantage of prequalification to compare your top lenders to each other. You’ll get much more specific information, and you’ll have your private loan options narrowed way down by the time you need to actually apply.

Not all lenders have prequalification as an option. But for those that do, you have a lot of additional information at your fingertips and ready to go when the application time arrives.

Interest RateInterest Rate & Other DiscountsRepayment Options (Monthly) Cosigner Release
sofi2.99% – 10.66% (Fixed)

0.95% – 11.18% (Variable)
$250 principal balance reduction benefit and 0.25% discount with autopayImmediate repayment, interest-only, fixed monthly payments in school, fully deferredYesCHECK RATE
College Ave Student Loans2.94% - 12.99% (Fixed)

0.94% - 11.98% (Variable)
Auto-Pay (0.25%)Flat Payment (In-School), Full (principal & interest), Deferred, & Interest-onlyYesCHECK RATE
commonbond-logo13.74% - 10.74% (Fixed)

3.79% - 9.35% (Variable)
Auto-Pay (0.25%)Immediate repayment, interest-only, fixed monthly payments in school, fully deferred YesCHECK RATE
sallie-mae-bank-vector-logo3.50% - 12.60% (Fixed)

1.13% - 11.23% (Variable)
0.25 percentage point deduction for auto debitPay now or later: Make interest payments, pay a fixed $25 payment, or defer payments until after school. YesCHECK RATE
Citizens Bank Student loans3.23% - 10.83% (Fixed)

1.03% - 10.24% (Variable)
Autopay (0.25%)
Loyalty (0.25%)
Full (principal & interest), Deferred, Interest-only, Immediate-RepaymentYesCHECK RATE
LendKey Student LoansAs low as 3.99% (Fixed)

As low as 1.49% (Variable)
Autopay (0.25%)Full payments (Principal and Interest) YesCHECK RATE

Research Makes Private Loans Easier

It’s important to know everything you can about private loan options before it’s time to apply. Prequalification is a tremendously valuable tool that will let you know what you’re likely to receive in your specific situation.

There’s no need to complete a long application process if you can find out information without it! Keep an eye out for prequalification options and take full advantage of them.











In this article:

Upcoming Events

Similar Articles for You

Student Loan Advice

Federal Loans

Student Loan Advice

Loans can help students cover college funding gaps. If your student has already accepted all scholarship and grant opportunities and

Avoid Loans With These College Cost-Cutting Tips

College Financial Planning

Avoid Loans With These College Cost-Cutting Tips

This article is primarily for people who have high school seniors headed to college next year. I wish I’d known

Using a Home Equity Loan for College

College Financial Planning

Using a Home Equity Loan for College

“How will we pay for college?” It’s a question that’s on every parent’s mind as their child approaches the end

Become a Member

At Road2College you’ll find everything you need to make the admissions and paying for college process less stressful and more transparent.


Explore College Insights™ — your source for finding affordable colleges and merit scholarships.


Get coaching on admissions and college financing.


Join Road2College where parents and experts work together to inform and inspire college-bound families.