International Student Loans
You should always carefully evaluate how much money you will need to study in the USA. Then research and apply for scholarships, financial aid from your school, and find money from any other source, including family funds. After exhausting these avenues, most international students still have a funding gap, and that's where international student loans come in.
International Student Loans are now a very realistic way to finance your education in the US. Loans are very flexible, and can offer loan amounts high enough to pay for your entire education, but with extended repayment terms and reasonable interest rates, so you can afford the repayment after you graduate.
Here's some basic information you should know about international student loans:
- US Co-Signer Required. Since these loans are credit-based, international student loans require a credit-worthy US citizen or permanent resident (green card holder) as a co-signer.
- Repayment. Repayment of an international student loan can be deferred while you are in school, and for six months after you finish school. After that, you will have up to 20 years to repay the loan, with a payment due every month. If you choose, you can pay off the loan early with no penalty, saving lots of interest.
- Maximum Amount. Typically, you can borrow the full amount of tuition, room and board, fees and living expenses, as calculated for your school, up to an overall maximum amount (typically $30,000 per year; some programs offer up to $50,000 per year).
- Interest Rates. Interest rates on international student loans are variable, based on an index (the LIBOR), so your rate and your payment amount will continue to move up and down with the index.
When used responsibly as part of an overall education funding plan, international student loans can help to put a US education within reach, regardless of your financial circumstances. There are two main loan resources dedicated to providing funding for international students and they are International Student Loan and Study Abroad Loans - please visit them for more information.