Student Loans

Get tips and advice on student loans and colleges, and compare private student loan lenders.

Student Loan Resources

Student Loans 101

1. Prepare for the the application.

The information and paperwork you need to apply will vary by lender, but generally you'll need to include the following:

  • Name of your college
  • Estimated cost of attendance
  • Your major
  • Your Social Security number
  • Employment and income information (for you and your cosigner)

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2. Compare rates and terms.

Treat your student loan like any other financial transaction — shop around for the best deal before making your decision.

You can use Bankrate's student loan marketplace to compare interest rates and repayment terms from many of the country's top lenders. Explore your options by checking out at least two or three potential lenders.

3. Get input before deciding.

Talk it over with your family and guidance counselor. If you have friends already in college, ask them for recommendations on getting a student loan. Find an online forum and see what your peers are saying.

When you're ready, you can apply for your student loan online — quicker and easier than you might think — and get the money you need for college.

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