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Our experts ranked and reviewed everything from affordability to repayment options to find the best student loan lenders of 2024. While some lenders may be partners, this didn’t influence our selection process.

At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation of . Read more about how we scored the 2024 Bankrate Awards winners in .

See our top picks

Awards

Best for refinancing

 Laurel Road

Laurel Road

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Multiple discounts and bonuses Few fees Full balance covered

Why they won

Laurel Road is our top pick for student loan refinancing because of its competitive interest rates, range of repayment options, wide availability, multiple rate discounts and few fees. Parents can also refinance their PLUS loans and private loans with the lender.

Top features

  • Refer-a-friend bonus and multiple rate discounts.
  • No origination, application or prepayment fees.
  • Refinance up to your full loan balance for eligible degree types.
  • View your rate without affecting your credit.
Awards

Best for borrowers with good credit

SoFi

SoFi

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Borrow what you need Zero fees Member benefits

Why they won

If you have strong credit, or a co-signer who does, SoFi has it all — low interest rates, no mandatory fees and you can borrow as much as you need to pay for school. SoFi’s loans are also open to undergraduate and graduate students and their parents.

Top features

  • Loans up to the school’s certified cost of attendance.
  • No prepayment, mandatory origination or late fees.
  • Members get benefits like unemployment protection, rate discounts and referral bonuses.
  • View your rate with a soft credit check.
Awards

Best for parents

Earnest

Earnest

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Rate-match available Four ways to pay Accessible eligibility requirements

Why they won

Earnest has some of the lowest rates available for parent loans, and multiple discounts to minimize borrowing costs. Earnest’s loans also feature flexible payment options and less strict eligibility requirements when compared to other lenders.

Top features

  • Lender will match any competing offer and add a gift card.
  • Deferred, fixed, interest-only and full monthly payment options.
  • Low credit score and income requirements.
  • Grace period, autopay discount and no fees.

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Awards
Awards

Best for undergraduate students

Federal student loans

Federal student loans

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Easy to qualify Low fixed rate Flexible payments

Why they won

Federal student loans don’t require a credit check, have a low fixed rate and, in some cases, interest won’t accrue while in school. These loans also feature income-driven repayment and forgiveness options, which aren’t available through private lenders.

Top features

  • Available to part-time and full-time students in good academic standing.
  • Low-fixed rate, regardless of your credit score and income.
  • Income-driven repayment and loan forgiveness options.
  • No need for a co-signer.
Awards

Best for undergraduate students

SoFi

SoFi

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Family discount No fees Covers all school attendance costs

Why they won

SoFi offers some of the lowest student loan rates in the market, provides multiple rate discount options and allows you to borrow up to your full cost of attendance. The lender also allows co-signers, making it easier for students to qualify.

Top features

  • Get an additional rate discount when you cosign for two or more borrowers.
  • No mandatory fees — not even late fees.
  • Borrow up to your school’s certified cost of attendance.
  • Grace period, autopay discount and unemployment protection.
Awards

Best for graduate students

College Ave

College Ave

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Good for different programs Longer-than-average grace period Flexible repayment

Why they won

College Ave offers graduate loans for multiple degree programs, covering 100 percent of the school-certified cost of attendance. Its graduate loans also feature low interest rates and a generous grace period.

Top features

  • Loans for graduate programs like medical school, law school and dental school.
  • Generous grace period for borrowers in medical school.
  • Deferred, interest-only, flat and full monthly payment options.
  • Autopay discount and no prepayment fees or origination fees.
Awards

Best for boot camps/vocational programs

Ascent

Ascent

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Graduation reward Long grace period View your rate before applying

Why they won

Ascent is one of the few lenders that offers loans for boot camps and career programs. Students can borrow up to the full cost of attendance and get access to multiple discounts that can help reduce borrowing costs.

Top features

  • Cash back reward upon graduation.
  • Grace period.
  • Check your rate with a soft credit pull.
  • Autopay discount and no prepayment penalties.
Awards

Best for MBA students

Earnest

Earnest

Learn more in our Bankrate review
Highlights Skip-a-payment feature No fees Borrow up to full cost

Why they won

MBA programs are notorious for being expensive. Earnest covers 100 percent of the cost of attendance, plus offers competitive rates, extended grace periods, four ways to pay and many other perks.

Top features

  • Skip a payment once a year without any penalties.
  • No prepayment penalty, origination or late payment fees.
  • Borrow up to the full school-certified cost of attendance.
  • Grace period, autopay discount and rate-match guarantee.

Explore the best of the best

Check out the 2024 Bankrate Awards winners across our top categories.