Consolidating direct plus loans

If like many college graduates, you have multiple student loans, you’ve probably heard the term “student loan consolidation” thrown around more than once when talking about repayment options.

Effective July 1, 2010, all new federal student loans, including consolidation loans, come directly from the U. Private/alternative loans are not eligible for federal consolidation.While you can’t combine your private student loans with federal loans into the Direct Consolidation Federal Loan, you may find that a private loan consolidation will accept your federal loans.However, most sources advise against consolidating federal and private loans together. For instance, Discover Student Loans offers a number of repayment assistance options, including deferments, extensions, forbearance, and hardship to help borrowers repay their loans.Stipulations and rules for private loan consolidation vary by the financial institution you’re working with.Unlike federal loan consolidation, a private loan may carry a variable interest rate, which means it — and therefore your monthly payment — can change over time.

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Consider the following resources to help you determine if and when consolidating might be the right option for you: If you have questions about the number of loans you have borrowed, the amount of each loan, or your outstanding balance(s), check with the My Federal Student Aid website or National Student Loan Data System (NSLDS).

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