How to Get a Student Loan for Studying Abroad
Quality education is without controversy a priceless asset. When it comes to studying abroad, knowledge is costly! Despite the thrilling experience, you have to overcome securing a student loan for international study if you don’t have the money for it.
Therefore, applicants who are in need of financial support explore a ton of options to cover their expenses.
A usual choice is to apply for study abroad scholarships or financial loans. This requires exhausting and time-consuming procedures. This guide is an eye-opener for American students that want to study abroad.
Before you apply for any study abroad loan opportunity, check the following details:
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Available options when selecting a study abroad loan to apply for depends on the program you wish to run. Consequently, application procedures and conditions also vary from one program to another.
Here is a brief description of all the different types of loans you may apply for:
General Student Loan
The difference between this type of loan and a traditional study abroad loan is the mode of application, qualifications, and the make-up of their repayment scheme.
Bear in mind that every loan institution will handle the process of these two loans differently, so you must inquire from the financial aid in your university prior enrolment.
Federal Student Loan
Federal student loans come in different types. Application for a Federal Student Loan services requires you to complete the necessary paperwork (FAFSA). It is often a need-oriented loan with an amount ranging from $5,000 – $20,000.
If you are currently earning credits through your home university while studying abroad, you are still eligible for this loan and can apply through your University’s financial office.
First-timers with this loan scheme might have to go through a process that explains the general loan process and provides you with financial planning tools, that is, a beneficial counseling session.
Types of Federal Student Loans
Stafford Loans: These are either subsidized or unsubsidized loans. The ones granted to students based on their financial needs are termed subsidized loans.
PLUS Loans: These types of federal loans are available for graduate students, professional students or parents of undergraduate students, to assist them in foot college bills or career school.
These loans are not obtainable in all schools but in institutions where they are applicable. Interest in these loans is usually very low.
The Federal Perkins Loan Program provides aid for college or career school students with financial needs but you should confirm at the financial aid office in your University before applying.
With this type of loan, you can obtain whatever amount you need and in the case where your budget is surplus, you can make a refund without even having to pay interest.
This is an institution that helps students with college, graduate, and postgraduate degrees and it is one of the largest education loan providers.
Financial aid from these institutions come with either a fixed or variable interest rate.
This institution offers flexible repayment options and there are no application, origination, or disbursement fees required by the institution.
This institution offers the TruFit Student Loan to both U.S. and international students.
Wells Fargo student loans have low-interest rates and flexible repayment options and the loan scheme is beneficial to both the students and their parents.
Terms and Conditions set for this loan scheme are flexible and this scheme offers both variable and fixed interest rates.
Please note that there are potential dangers for applying for a private loan so in case of uncertainty or need for clarification.
You should ask your University’s financial aid office for assistance.
Have a Plan
There are certain requirements you must meet and certain paperwork you must fill out when applying for student loans.
Moreover, there is no substitute for planning and it is good practice to apply early – better safe than sorry!
Have a Decent Academic Stance
The application for study abroad loans is one that is not devoid of competition therefore, a weak academic status may inhibit your chances of getting a study abroad loan.
Get a good stance academically in your university to buffer your chances of success.
Get a Cosigner
Study abroad loans may require a cosigner.
The business of Cosigners is one that should be done with trust because your co-signer agrees to pay the debt if you are eventually unable to meet up.
A cosigner could be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with a strong credit history and a fair credit score who has lived in the U.S. for the past 2 years.
Get a Student Credit Card
Application for a Student Credit card buffers your chances of getting a study abroad loan.
It is good for your image as a student and speaks good things for the certainty of your loan.
Be Informed about your Type of Study Abroad Program
Getting acquainted with the details of your program provides you with all the necessary information to inform your choice of application for financial aid abroad.
Research your program thoroughly.
Visit the Financial Did Office at your University
The financial aid office in the university is your best friend and information bank on issues regarding study abroad loans.
They’ll assist you in getting credible loan sources and guard against unfortunate circumstances.
Make it a Habit to Apply on Time
This is vital information for applicants for federal student aid and loans.
Loan processes are time-consuming and the paperwork can be exhausting.
Thus, sending an early application is always preferable to going through the stress of trying to apply at the last minute.
Some loans don’t offer and even for those that give you a full ride, there is a tendency that you fall short of the criteria of eligibility along the line.
It’s always a smart idea to start saving up funds as early as possible either through a job, an online fund site, or even friends and family.
This way, you can complement the loan if it is not full-ride or have something to fall back on should you fail to keep up with the conditions for eligibility.
Criteria For Studying Abroad
Here are the things you should worry about while answering the question of eligibility:
You must be enrolled and able to receive credit at an approved school in the U.S.
Before you apply for a loan, be sure your institution or student loan center is eligible for each individual award.
How to Apply for a Study Abroad Loan
Provided you have satisfied the eligibility criteria, the following steps have been outlined to aid your application for study abroad loans:
Seek Out a Lot of Options with Study Abroad Loan Schemes
Compare several loan schemes before deciding to apply for any loans for students.
You should not forget to indicate your citizenship while exploring those schemes as well as pointing out the school through which you are studying in the U.S.
International Student Loan, ISLP, IEFA, and International Scholarships are helpful tools for searching and comparing schemes.
Pay Attention to the Terms and Conditions
You will be guided with a list of approved lenders that are trustworthy to work with you through your alleged institution.
Compare their basic loan terms on loan websites, and choose the one that’s right for you!
Get on with the online application and await your response in a matter of weeks.
After a successful application, there are still a few more drills!
Where do you pick up the loan if granted and how do you calculate the interest rate?
Firstly, when your loan application is successful and the response is positive.
Your alleged institution will receive the grant and make it available to you before you head out.
However, when it comes to calculating the interest rate, the exact interest rate depends on the type of loan you applied for!
The yardstick for calculating your interest rate is based on a Prime or LIBOR plus or minus margin and this margin depends on the credit evaluation of you and your cosigner.
In the case where a co-signer is absent, it depends solely on your credit evaluation.
Details of your interest rate are available in your credit report.
In your international and financial pursuit for quality international education, you need early planning, detailed research of your program and loan payment options and proper guidance.
Your university financial office remains the fulcrum of a successful solution to financial limitations concerning study abroad programs.