Private student loans should be considered “last resort” opportunities. You should utilize all other financing options before applying for a private product. Remember, federal student loan programs are less expensive than private loans and should be considered first. Private loan interest typically begins accruing immediately and fluctuates with market rates. Undergraduate private loan borrowers will be required to have a cosigner.
The lender, not Bradley, determines eligibility for a private loan. However, the university is required to certify your enrollment and calculate the amount you can borrow. Total loan amount is limited to cost of education minus financial assistance. Proceeds from these loans are disbursed through Bradley.
The university does not endorse or recommend any specific private loan products. To link to a nonprofit, independent website that provides information about private student loan programs and offers a comparison calculator, click here.
Before deciding on a lender, here are some questions you need to ask:
- How soon will I enter repayment? Are interest-only payments required during enrollment?
- How often is the interest capitalized? (Capitalization is when accrued interest is added to the principal balance. The frequency of capitalization will increase the total loan amount that you have to repay because you will be charged interest on a higher principal loan.)
- Is a co-signer required? If not, if I use a co-signer can I receive a better rate?
- Will the interest rate and fees change in repayment? Does the lender offer a fixed-rate product?
- What will my monthly payment be when I am in repayment?
- What kind of other benefits does the lender offer? (interest rate reductions with automatic withdrawals, principal reduction with a certain number of on-time payments, co-signer release, primary borrower death or disability cancellation)
Bradley takes no position on any particular lenders or the quality of their products. The following list of providers issued loans to Bradley students during the 2012-2013 academic period: