Student Loan Refinancing
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There is a lot of interest in refinancing student loans today. If you are someone who is interested in refinancing and are actively researching reviews, benefits, and pros/cons of reputable companies, then let’s talk about South Carolina Student Loan and their refinancing options.
South Carolina Student Loan is unique because they specifically seek customers that are South Carolina residents or people who graduated from a college or university in their state. They are strictly in the student loan business and offer both student loans for your initial education and refinanced student loans.
Their refinance opportunities are for private loans as well as most federal loans, including direct and PLUS loans. Their only exceptions are Perkins loans and loans for bar prep or medical residency.
The South Carolina Student Loan organization is a non-profit public interest corporation instituted by the state of South Carolina in 1973. Since that time, their goal has been to help students pursue higher education while educating them to save more and borrow less. Their approach has been so successful that it has helped South Carolina to recognize some of the lowest student loan default rates in the country.
Unlike many other lenders in the refinance marketplace, South Carolina Student Loan only focuses on student loans and student loan refinances. They do not offer ancillary banking, lending, or credit union services.
Their refinance product is called Palmetto Assistance Refi Loan (PAL Refi) and features interest rates that are determined by the length of the loan term. For example, if you have a 5-year term, your interest rate will be lower than if you opt for a 20-year term. This interest rate is set based on both length of term as well as your creditworthiness.
Keeping in mind that interest rates change every day, as of April 2022 this is the current breakdown of refinancing rates based on today’s fixed rates and two different levels of credit scores:
Loan Term Average Credit Score Good Credit Score
5 Year 4.57%–5.24% 2.99%–3.91%
10 Year 5.24%–5.91% 3.91%–4.57%
15 Year 5.91%–6.57% 4.57%–5.24%
20 Year 6.57%–7.24% 5.24%–5.91%
Our Top-Rated Picks for 2022 Offer Low Rates and No Fees
For South Carolina residents and their families or those who graduated from schools in South Carolina, these are the options available:
To be eligible to refinance your federal and private loans, you need to meet these requirements:
Yes. South Carolina Student Loan was originally started by the state of South Carolina and is a non-profit public benefit corporation that is funded through state bond initiatives. Their loans are serviced through NelNet Servicing, LLC (doing business as Firstmark Services). They have oversight by a community-based board as well as the South Carolina state legislature.
As stated above, their only business is lending money for student loans and refinanced student loans. They also subscribe to a strict mission to help people save money and take advantage of scholarships, etc., so less borrowed money is required. They do not offer other lending or banking services.
Because they are more regional in nature, there are limited reviews online. They rate three stars out of five on Google, but these reviews include people expressing views on the regular student loan process more than on refinancing their student loans.
If you meet the criteria of being a South Carolina resident or former student at one of their colleges or universities, here are some of the pros of refinancing with South Carolina Student Loan:
Student loan refinancing combines your current loans into a single loan with a new rate and term. See how much you can save by entering your loan information below, or by getting quotes from multiple lenders using Purefy’s rate comparison tool.
Lifetime Interest Savings
New Monthly Payment
Like what you see? Check your actual prequalified rates from the industry’s top lenders in just 2 minutes or less.
Like refinancing with any company, there are cons associated with using that company. Here are some drawbacks to consider:
South Carolina Student Loan is a solid refinancing company that offers good interest rates for those that either live in the state or have obtained a certificate or degree from one of their many colleges or universities, including the Citadel and Clemson University.
They keep their site and user experience purposely streamlined and straightforward for an uncomplicated process.
They offer student loan advisor consultations and a savings calculator that estimates your savings broken down for 5, 10, 15, and 20 years with your interest rate, monthly payment estimate, total cost, and total savings.
Refinancing a loan with South Carolina is a good idea if you have or would benefit from some of the following:
There are a number of benefits to refinancing that apply to all private lenders. It’s important to know what your overall goals are and what will work for your lifestyle and financial budget. When looking into refinancing your private and/or federal student loans, consider these options.
By refinancing to a lower interest rate, you can save money on your monthly payments and possibly thousands of dollars over the life of the loan.
This is due to the historically low interest rates now available when refinancing your student loans. While this may not last much longer, right now there are exceedingly good deals to be made by refinancing to a lower rate.
For example, if you have a student loan that carries an interest rate of 7.8% on $42,000 for 10 years, by lowering your rate to 3.2% you save almost $100 per month and $11,500 over the entire loan period.
Plus, there are no fees to refinance — so your savings go directly into your pocket.
If you want to pay off your loans faster, you can pick a shorter loan term when you refinance. This allows you to pay off the entire balance so that you can redirect that money to something else of significance (if that’s your goal).
With today’s crazy low rates, your monthly payment could still be similar to what you are currently paying while allowing you to pay down the debt more quickly.
By choosing a loan term that is longer, say 15 or 20 years, you will effectively lower your monthly payments and ease your overall budget. The downside to this choice is that you may end up paying more in interest over the longer period. Again, the low rates available today can lessen the impact of this choice.
The best way to determine how much of a change any of these options has on your overall loan costs is to use a student loan calculator such as the one offered by Purefy.com.
When you refinance federal loans (and to a degree, private loans), you lose access to the benefits offered by these programs. Be sure to research these choices because that can include:
When you compare rates, you are taking your personal finances and presenting them to lenders for all to see and evaluate. It goes without saying that you want to present yourself in the best light possible so that you are offered the lowest interest rates.
Before you start comparing or applying for refinanced student loans, know what your personal information looks like and make changes if needed.
740-799 Very Good
800 and above Excellent
If these three aspects of your financial portfolio look good, then the next step is to compare a cross section of lenders to see where you fall in terms of savings.
While South Carolina doesn’t make it easy, it’s important to obtain quotes from several private lenders to ensure you are getting the best interest rates and terms available to you. Plus, every lender offers different special offers and programs worth taking a look at.
After learning about the refinance options offered by South Carolina Student Loan, it’s time to compare rates with other private lenders using Purefy’s tool.
Using the tool doesn’t cost anything and doesn’t impact your credit report. In about two minutes, you will have pre-approved rate quotes for up to four different lenders who are eager to work with you in refinancing your student loans.
You can then compare those rates and terms from what you received from South Carolina and make an informed decision.
To fill out the basic information on the comparison tool, you should gather the following details:
Now you can fill out the information and get your quotes.
From there it’s easy — if your preferred lender is South Carolina, just select the offer and complete your application.
South Carolina Student Loan is for residents of South Carolina or anyone who graduated from a school in the state. Funded by bond initiatives as well as private investors, South Carolina is a reputable lender alternative if you meet the residency requirements.
They offer competitive fixed and variable refinancing rates for student loans and base their interest rates on how long the term will be, i.e., the longer the term the higher the interest rate to borrow money. South Carolina currently offers flexible terms for 5, 10, 15, and 20 years.
Some other benefits to keep in mind are a 0.25% discount for using autopay and a generous minimum and maximum total loan amount of between $5,000 and $250,000. Also, forbearance and deferment options are possible through their loan servicing partner – Firstmark.
If you would like a more guided approach, they have experienced loan advisers ready to discuss your refinance and answer any questions you may have. They are available by phone.
If you’re looking to refinance student loans, South Carolina Student Loan could be a great option – but it’s still important to compare with other lenders in order to save the most money. If you choose to include South Carolina in your research, you can use Purefy’s Comparison Rate Tool.
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