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Financial Stuff

sdb9

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Hey,
Does anyone have any advice about which lenders are the best? They all kind of seem the same to me. Also, how do you know if one lender will cover all your expenses? I am going to a UK school too so it complicates things a bit.
 

soxbox

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I cannot speak for vet school loans as I have yet to actually (gulp) sign on the dotted line for that $200,000.... but as far as my undergrad and grad loans, I consolidated with Sallie Mae... I suppose they have been pretty good so far... I was able to get a great interest rate (around 2% or so), they have decent payback lengths (up to 30 years), automatic payment setup, something around .5 to 1 point reduction in interest after I think its 36 consecutive on time payments... overall decent customer service... I also have a private student loan with Citibank and find that they are pretty decent as well, same benefits, though I think with them there is an interest savings after only 24 consecutive payments... though they do have a higher, variable interest rate... but that is mostly due to the fact that it was a private loan and not federal. When I first took that loan out in 2000, it was at 10%... it dropped as low as 4% and now is somewhere around 7.5%...

I will see how great they are when I call and tell them I am a student again and need to defer these loans so they can accrue even more interest :)


Sort of on the same idea, how many people are planning on financing vet school mostly with loans? I think I will have to borrow almost the full $200,000... scary thought... but unless I move somewhere to gain residency and put all my eggs in one basket and try to get into that state school, this is pretty much my only option... (unless Tufts decides to drop tuition to $15,000!!)
 
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CookieBear

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While we're talking about this.. I'd like to ask...

What's the process of securing the loans? Complete and submit the FAFSA and any other applicable forms (for that particular school), and wait for the 'package' i.e. results/"SAR" I remember...?

Or, did those of you, who have gotten loans, go out on the internet, or walk into your favorite bank, etc., and apply that way?

Or, both?

Back in undergrad, I remember doing the FAFSA and perhaps another one, the FAF or something, and several weeks later, I'd get a SAR in the mail, which was hard to understand, but your school would translate it into a financial aid package, and they'd tell you, OK, you can get this loan, this grant, etc. etc.

That was a long time ago for me, and that was undergrad, so is the method different now, or different for grad school? (Within the U.S. in my case).
 

birdvet2006

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I liked CitiBank but they have an aggregate loan limit around $110,000. I definitely needed more than that, so I had to borrow from IEFC (International Education Financing Corporation), which was the recommended lender by my vet school. I did get a couple loans from Sallie Mae as well, in the beginning.

I took out my full share of Staffords ($18500 per year maximum allowed), all from Sallie Mae. I consolidated those with Sallie Mae too. My interest rate for those is 2.25%.

The process is this, at least for an overseas school:
You can apply for Staffords and private loans simultaneously. The FAFSA is filled out annually (after the first year you can fill out the renewal FAFSA) online. You await your SAR (Student Aid Report) - which is usually sent to your school's financial aid office. After that, your school approves the loan and you get your money when you need it (assuming you've applied ahead of time).
Private loans - you go to their website and either do an online form or print one out, or sometimes you may have to request they send you one. I often had to request one since Glasgow wasn't on the list of schools to choose from when filling out an online form. This means more time, so be sure to apply way ahead of time.

I am in excess of $200,000 in debt, I think. My interest is building up all the time. I may be crazy to try for a residency. We'll see what happens. If I don't get a residency, I must say that I'll be happy to be aiming for a high paying job (and being internship-trained, hopefully I'm worth a lot).
 

laurafinn

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Hey CookieBear,

Congrats on KSU! Yay! Basically, I filled out a FAFSA electronically, got my SAR a few days later (electronically), printed my SAR out, and choose the banks for my Stafford and GradPlus loans and printed off promissory notes from the lender websites. Then I submitted the SAR, promissory notes, and a one-page form to the school.

You might just fill out the FAFSA and the school will take care of the rest, I don't know. Massey is in its first few years of processing US Fed Financial Aid in any real way, so they're ironing out the kinks. Vet students here did get award letters a few weeks after we submitted all our stuff.

Too, schools usually have preferred lenders they work with, which can make the process of actually getting the money smoother.

All the best,

Laura
 

CookieBear

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Hey CookieBear,

Congrats on KSU! Yay! Basically, I filled out a FAFSA electronically, got my SAR a few days later (electronically), printed my SAR out, and choose the banks for my Stafford and GradPlus loans and printed off promissory notes from the lender websites. Then I submitted the SAR, promissory notes, and a one-page form to the school.

You might just fill out the FAFSA and the school will take care of the rest, I don't know. Massey is in its first few years of processing US Fed Financial Aid in any real way, so they're ironing out the kinks. Vet students here did get award letters a few weeks after we submitted all our stuff.

Too, schools usually have preferred lenders they work with, which can make the process of actually getting the money smoother.

All the best,

Laura


Cool. OK. Time to click submit on my FAFSA and get that done.

Thank you, Laura. :)
 

kate_g

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And another related question... I believe I read in a summary of Pelosi's "Six for '06" things she intended to accomplish in the first 100 hours of the new Congress or whatever that was... A reduction in the student loan rates (Staffords only?). Gone are the days of 2.5% Sallie Mae consolidations, and the Stafford rate was recently switched from a variable rate to 6.8% fixed... So I'm wondering, if Stafford rates were reduced, what's the new rate and when did it take effect? Anybody know?

Oh, BTW, there's a financial aid forum on this board too, with loads of basic info, people's thoughts on various lenders, and all kinds of other stuff.
 
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