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Manager
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23 Apr 2007, 20:52
oh no, im doing the masters of finance
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16 Nov 2008, 19:15
Guys, I decided to bump this. As folks start hearing about decisions, they start thinking about money....

Keep in mind, this info is from a bit ago, but still a good place to start.
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03 Jan 2009, 13:54
aaudetat - I am about to finish up my MBA in May and I have subsidized stafford, unsubsidized stafford, and plus loans. I was wondering if you had any insight into consolidation? How does it work? Is it impossible to get now because of the credit crisis?

Also - is there any way outside of the repayment deductions built into the loans to get a lower interest rate? It seems like consolidation just averages the loan interest rates which seems slightly unfair considering the rates that are available out there.

Is there any hope for those of us who have the 6.8% Stafford fixed and the 8+% fixed on the PLUS loans?
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03 Jan 2009, 14:17
Hi, Oasis! I remember you from our application days...

Hmmm. Well, consolidation works pretty easily - call the lender, fill out a form, and then they process it. The good thing about consolidation is that it will extend your payments. I think the default is 10 and it goes to 15 (years) or maybe it's 15 and goes to 20. I think it also depends on the amount you have. (I'm more familiar with undergrad loans, and those are 10 and 15.) It also used to be that you could lock in your rate, but that's not the case for us, since we're already fixed.

I don't know if the credit crisis is having an impact on consolidation. These are all gov't loans, secured by the feds, so I'd guess no, but am only guessing.

Our rates are fixed, so that's that. I've heard rumblings of new legislation, but don't think anything's been passed and don't know if it'd help retroactively anyway.

Wow, look how unhelpful i am.

OasisNYK wrote:
aaudetat - I am about to finish up my MBA in May and I have subsidized stafford, unsubsidized stafford, and plus loans. I was wondering if you had any insight into consolidation? How does it work? Is it impossible to get now because of the credit crisis?

Also - is there any way outside of the repayment deductions built into the loans to get a lower interest rate? It seems like consolidation just averages the loan interest rates which seems slightly unfair considering the rates that are available out there.

Is there any hope for those of us who have the 6.8% Stafford fixed and the 8+% fixed on the PLUS loans?
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03 Jan 2009, 14:24
I don't think federal loans with fixed rates (basically everything disbursed after 2005-06, I think?) can be consolidated for a lower rate of interest anymore.

We can all thank Congress for this.
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14 Jan 2009, 21:02
With interest rates at historic lows, has anyone going to school this fall looked into financing options? I know there are the Stafford loans at 6.80% fixed, has anyone found any better deals? Where are private student loan rates coming in these days?
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22 Jan 2009, 11:15
solaris1 wrote:
For borrowers with excellent credit (750+ FICO), I am currently hearing of "private" (school-certified) loans at Prime+100bps or around 1mLIBOR+400bps. But this will vary by the school you're attending and your credit history.

If these rates stay in effect until May or July 2008, I personally intend to apply for a 1mLIBOR indexed loan over the GradPlus loans which are, as we know, 8.50% fixed but also include 3.00% upfront in origination fees and a 1.00% federal default fee. The "private" loans, for borrowers with excellent credit, tack on 0% in fees. I am led to believe a LIBOR indexed loan is preferable to a Prime indexed loan because the spread between the two has been increasing over the years, in 1mLIBOR's favour.

This is just based on my (limited) research so far. YMMV. I'd love to hear if anyone else has found other information worth sharing.

Solaris,

Where are you getting this info from? I'm really curious about these prime+100bps loans. I've got a great credit rating and I'm thinking I should be able to do better than 8.5% considering the current prime rate.

Do you just go through your school?

RF
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22 Jan 2009, 11:56
Oh wow. Solaris - you are very knowledgeable in this area.

May I ask, do you do this for living? I am curious.
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22 Jan 2009, 15:38
I will throw in there that private loans don't always offer the bells and whistles of the federal dollars. Flexibility with repayment (income-sensitive, graduated, forbearance, extended payment terms) is mainly what i am thinking of. Private student lenders vary quite a bit, while all federal lenders follow the exact same rules.
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22 Jan 2009, 16:23
solaris1 wrote:
If you are uncomfortable with this interest rate risk, you should take out the GradPlus loan which offers a fixed 8.5% rate no matter what.

Bear in mind you can also take out $41,000 (over two years) worth of federal loans through the Stafford program @ 6.8% fixed. I plan to take the full amount in Stafford loans before considering "private" education loans. Ahh!!! No locked in rate. I see! Ok, the Stafford is looking much better at this point. It is a gamble, but I would a relatively safe one if you feel you can pay off the loans in a short period of time? For example, if you finance$41K of the $90K of tuition by Stafford, then the remainder ($49K) at 4.X% variable rate, the prime would have to go up almost 300 bps before you matched the rate on a Stafford, right?

If you feel you can pay off the loans in 5 years or less (at least the non-Stafford loans), even if the prime rate went up 600 bps, the overall impact would be relatively small.

Considering the state of the credit market/economy I would guess that rates will be relatively low for the next few years.

Or am I missing something here?

RF
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23 Jan 2009, 01:12
Loan Crisis Hits the MBA World
With big lenders requiring co-signers, international students are finding that money is tight. For many, B-school dreams may be over before they start

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23 Jan 2009, 03:33
ninkorn wrote:
Loan Crisis Hits the MBA World
With big lenders requiring co-signers, international students are finding that money is tight. For many, B-school dreams may be over before they start

Yes, this is true. It is just not possible to get a co-signer. And not all schools have equal empathy towards the situation..

BTW, I do not think the international student population will reduce alarmingly , since anyway lion's share of the international students in TOP US B-schools have credit history ( and in many cases Green Card) in US or come from the creme-de-la-creme segment of an international country. There will be reduction of international student of course but the first two groups will fill that shortfall.
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23 Jan 2009, 04:13
Do they count green card holder as international student though?

I agree with you. The numbers won't go dip at all.
I've been hanging out with internationals since I was an undergrad..and..I notice a lot of creme de la creme internationals for undergrad. I'm not saying all of them are, but a big portion of them usually would be successful regardless of bschool.
For school, I believe they don't even need any kind of loan. And these people have good 'why mba' stories too (because they have something running already that they can take further if they have that mba) plus loaded recommendations.
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24 Jan 2009, 17:25
I recall reading, some time ago, that one should try to postpone any financial gifts when attempting to secure Federal aid for B-School. When I receive my Financial Aid package, will the amount I have in my 401(k) and/or savings account affect how much the Federal government would be willing to loan me? I recall hearing that one could borrow up to the full budgeted yearly amount from the Fed, but I'm guessing the amount of money in my accounts would determine how much Uncle Sam gives me in subsidized loans.

Last edited by MeddlingKid on 24 Jan 2009, 17:51, edited 1 time in total.
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24 Jan 2009, 17:52
aaudetat wrote:
MeddlingKid wrote:
I recall reading, some time ago, that one should try to postpone any financial gifts when attempting to secure Federal aid for B-School. When I receive my Financial Aid package, will the amount I have in my 401(k) and/or savings account affect how much the Federal government would be willing to loan me? I recall hearing that one could borrow up to the full budgeted yearly amount from the Fed, but I'm guessing the amount of money in my accounts would determine how much Uncle Sam gives me in unsubsidized loans.

they do not count qualified retirement accounts (401k, IRA) or the value of your home. They will look at non-qualified accounts, such as savings, money market, stocks, etc.

The subsidized/unsubsidized part is determined by need.

So a person could, theoretically, take out the full amount in Plus loans even if he didn't receive any need-based Stafford aid?
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24 Jan 2009, 17:58
Yes, but why would you want to do that if you can take $20,500 in unsubsidized Stafford loans at 6.8% each year, as opposed to the GradPlus loans at 8.5%. Eligibility for unsubsidized Stafford loans is not need-based. And even if you qualify for subsidized Stafford loans, you can only borrow$8,500 a year under the auspices of that program.

MeddlingKid wrote:
So a person could, theoretically, take out the full amount in Plus loans even if he didn't receive any need-based Stafford aid?
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24 Jan 2009, 19:00
solaris1 wrote:
Eligibility for unsubsidized Stafford loans is not need-based. And even if you qualify for a subsidized Stafford loans, you can only borrow \$8,500 a year under the auspices of that program.

not need-based? my bad. I know that in undergrad my friends from wealthier families got all of their staffords as unsubsidized while mine were all subsidized.
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25 Jan 2009, 03:39
I read this article talking about financial aid and loans are down this year. This hasn't hit me yet, since I applied in R2. For those of you that applied in R1 and got admitted, have you guys started looking into how to finance the education? Is financial aid and loans really down? I think Kry said his loan jumped to 11%, that's crazy, my credit card rate isn't even that high. Any anecdotes you would like to share?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090125/ap_ ... PCw_Gs0NUE

Last edited by nink on 25 Jan 2009, 06:35, edited 1 time in total.
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25 Jan 2009, 10:24
solaris1 wrote:
Just a quick comment, the official website for federal student aid programs is:
http://studentaid.ed.gov/PORTALSWebApp/students/english/studentloans.jsp.

Everything else is just some lender posing as an "official" resource. StaffordLoan.com is just a site owned by one such lender, and is not affiliated with the Department of Education's Stafford program.

While you are free to go with any lender for Stafford and GradPLUS loans (the incentives and rates virtually all lenders offer are now identical), it's probably a good idea to pick a Stafford/GradPLUS lender "recommended" by your school's financial aid office.

This doesn't apply to private education loans however.

isa wrote:

Woah - good to know that there are sites posing as "official" resources. Thanks for the heads up.
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25 Jan 2009, 10:26
solaris1 wrote:
And the rates you posted isa apply to undergraduate Stafford loans. Stafford loans for graduate study are fixed at 6.80%, they don't come down gradually like the undergraduate ones will in coming years.

Good to know solaris1 - I was actually going to ask why they come down gradually. I had heard that the rates were fixed so that was confusing.

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