Student loans could become more expensive with higher interest rates.
Here’s what you need to know.
The Federal Reserve raised interest rates yesterday by 0.25%. The Fed could also raise interest rates further six times this year. This could have serious consequences for student borrowers. Student loan repayments are expected to resume after May 1, 2022, so you may be wondering what impact this will have on your student loans. Here are the key details.
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Student Loans: How Higher Interest Rates Affect Student Loans
When the Federal Reserve raises interest rates, the cost of borrowing increases. This applies to financial products, including mortgages or credit card debt. The Federal Reserve raises or lowers the federal funds rate, which is the rate that financial institutions charge each other to borrow money overnight. The change in the federal funds rate affects the interest rate you pay or the funds you earn in your savings account. Although your monthly payments may increase, there’s good news if you’re saving money in a bank account. As interest rates rise, you can earn more money from your savings with a higher interest rate. However, what do higher student loan interest rates mean?
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Student loans: federal student loans
There is good news and bad news for federal student loans. Let’s start with the good news. For current student loan borrowers, the interest rate on your federal student loans will not change. Why? Most federal student loans have fixed interest rates, which means the interest will not change for the term of your student loans. So the Fed can raise interest rates six times or more, and your interest rate will stay the same. (Biden could suspend student loans forever). That said, some older federal student loans may have a variable interest rate. If you have a variable interest rate, your interest rate will change as the Fed raises interest rates. The bad news is that interest rates will go up for student borrowers who plan to borrow student loans starting later this year. This includes current or potential student borrowers or parents who will be borrowing new student loans. The federal government resets interest rates on new federal student loans each year on July 1.
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Student loans: private student loans
Private student loans are generally more flexible than federal student loans. How? ‘Or’ What? For example, you can choose a fixed interest rate or a variable interest rate when borrowing a private student loan. Like federal student loans, a private student loan with a fixed interest rate will not be affected by an increase in interest rates. In this case, the interest rate on your private student loans will remain the same for the duration of your student loan. On the other hand, if you have a private student loan with variable interest rates, your rate will increase as the Fed raises interest rates.
Student loan refinancing: how to get a lower interest rate
Refinancing student loans is a smart strategy to get a lower interest rate. With student loan refinancing, you can get a lower interest rate, a lower monthly payment, or both. Student loan refinance rates are ridiculously cheap right now, starting as low as 1.74% for a variable rate and 1.99% for a fixed rate.
This student loan refinance calculator shows you how much money you can save when you refinance student loans.
This is especially useful if you want to lock in a low fixed interest rate since the Fed plans to raise interest rates multiple times this year. Student loan refinance rates will increase, so if you’re considering refinancing, it’s best to do it now rather than later. To qualify for student loan refinance, you’ll need at least a $650 credit, be currently employed or have a signed job offer, and have enough monthly cash flow to pay bills. living expenses and making current debt payments. If you want to get student loan forgiveness or want to keep your federal benefits such as income-contingent repayment, keep your current federal student loans and only refinance private student loans. Alternatively, if you want to save money and get a lower rate or monthly payment, you can refinance private and federal student loans.
Student loan repayments start again after May 1, 2022. Be sure to evaluate all your options, especially with the potential for multiple interest rate increases that could make your student loans more expensive.
Here are some popular ways to save money: